God help thee, poor monkey. - Macbeth

Monday, December 17, 2007

Let's play tag!

I've been tagged for a meme by my dad, so here are 5 Little Known Facts About Me.

1. Strangely, like my dad, I ALSO have a group of freckles shaped like the Big Dipper (missing 1 or 2 of the stars). Mine is on my left shoulder, though.

2. I have a massive scar on my stomach from spilling boiling water down my front last year. It was the last day of winter break, and I was stressing out about calculus. As a result, I wasn't paying as much attention I should have, and the pot that I was pouring the water out of slipped and splashed the water all down my front. I got my shirt up off my stomach, so the burn wasn't as bad as it could've been, but the waistband of my jeans got completely soaked and my stomach was burned pretty badly. It's not really noticeable now, but I still think it looks horrible.

3. I am a jigsaw puzzle master.

4. I played Princesses in my neighbors' backyards until I was 13. We still have lots of inside jokes from back then.

5. I played Templeton the rat in my high school's play of Charlotte's Web last spring. It was really fun.

I tag Crayons and PoodleDoc.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Movie Review: The Golden Compass (SPOILER ALERT!!)

Sorry, but I can't write this review without some spoilers. Stop reading now if you don't want to know anything about the movie. So, first of all, I have to say that I had very low expectations for this movie. I love love love the book, and what with all the disappointing movie adaptations that I've seen over the years, I didn't expect this one to be any good. Not only that, but the trailers made it seem like they had completely changed the theme of the story, which really bugged me.

That being said, I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. It followed the plot of the book pretty well, and Dakota Blue Richards was a much better Lyra than I expected. Also, the clips of the scenery that they showed in the trailers were somewhat misleading. For the most part, I really enjoyed this movie, and I think that everyone should go see it (ignore the reviews, they're never right about movies anyway).

There were a couple things that bugged me. For one thing, the movie seemed a little rushed. Not just to me, but to my friends as well. I think this was because they were trying to fit as much into the movie as possible. I think I'll have to see it a second time to see how it sits with me, but I did like that they didn't cut out too much from the books. Another thing that bugged me was that they changed a couple of the characters around. It's not that big of a deal, and I can't say who it was without giving away the movie, but let's just say that in the book, Billy Costa's daemon isn't named Ratter. Ratter meets the same fate in the book and the movie, but he has no relation to Billy Costa at all. The third thing that bugged me was that everything seemed a little...cartoonish. It was too bright of a movie for my liking, and I felt that it should have been darker and dirtier, especially in the city. Also, they changed Iofur Raknison's name to Ragnar Sturlusson, but I think that was so people who hadn't read the book didn't confuse him with Iorek Byrnison.

The cast, I thought, was phenomenal. It included a lot of very well known people, such as Ian McKellan, Christopher Lee, Nicole Kidman, and Daniel Craig, as well as newcomer Dakota Blue Richards who, as I mentioned before, did a really good job. However, I didn't feel like there was enough character development in the movie. Because they didn't cut much out, everything went so fast that there wasn't really time for the audience to develop an emotional connection with the characters. Also, everything was told rather than shown, which is something that really shouldn't be done in filmmaking or writing. The dialogue is important, but if they tell you everything, it just doesn't work out. As a result, I felt like a non-reader wouldn't quite grasp the concept of things like daemons and Dust. I mean, they tell you what it is, but you don't really GET it, if you know what I mean.

Now, I know I said they followed the book faithfully. This is true up to a point. However, the entire ending was cut off, which really pissed me off. I've been reading reviews on imdb, and other fans, it seems, feel exactly the same way. It would appear that the common audience reaction is, "WHAT THE HELL?! THEY CAN'T END IT THERE!" According to interviews with both Philip Pullman (the author), and Chris Weitz (the director), they changed the ending because they felt that it would make more sense if they put that part at the beginning of the second movie (if they make a sequel. It all depends on how much money this one makes). I disagree, however. I think that ending the movie where the book ends is crucial to the development of the characters of Lyra, Ms. Coulter, and Lord Asriel. I also think that if they're trying to follow the books as precisely as they did in the first movie, they're going to run out of time because now they are going to have to put in this huge, important event from the first movie as well as the entire second book. It's just very very frustrating. Also, it makes the ending of the movie all sugary sweet and happy, which really doesn't fit with the books at all. The books are super dark, and the movie was pretty bright and cheery.

All in all, the movie was better than I expected, but I wish that they had taken their time more. I feel like if they had cut out some less important stuff and taken their time with the more important stuff. Show, don't tell, would have been a good rule for them to follow. I also wish the movie were darker. Since I went with low expectations, I liked the movie more than I expected. However, it seemed kind of like they were trying to recreate the feel of LOTR, even to the point of having similar cinematography. Too bad Chris Weitz couldn't recreate Peter Jackson's understanding of good storytelling. "The Golden Compass" was better than most movie adaptations, but it could have been a lot better. I still recommend that you see it, though, if only so they have enough money to make a sequel. If I don't get to see Will and the Mulefa and the end of this trilogy, I will be very upset.

Oh, I forgot to mention, they handled the problem of the Church and the supposed "anti-Christian" messages really well. Philip Pullman isn't anti-religion, he's just against the problems caused by organized religion. We all know the church has gotten away with some pretty brutal stuff in the past. As for the movie, they just called the Church "the Magesterium" for the entire movie and referred to Adam and Eve as "Our Ancestors." It was a very masterful manipulation of language, although I wonder if the non-readers have any idea what is going on.
Anyway, check out "The Golden Compass." Okay, I'm done now.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Movie Review: Meet the Robinsons

Okay, I know what you're thinking. "Not another cutsie animated movie." I have to admit, I didn't expect much from this movie. I mean, I ENJOY cutsie animated movies, but the plot lines and gags get a bit old after a while. However, this movie was much better than I expected. The jokes were fresh, and the message was very sweet. I mean, yeah, it was kind of predictable, but it was also sweet and highly entertaining. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Now, if you're a die-hard animated movie hater (like certain PARENTS I could mention), you probably won't like it, but if you occasionally enjoy a cute, animated film, I would strongly recommend this one.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Back to Work

So Thanksgiving is over, and now it's back to school for me. Not much has changed in the past week. My roommate downloaded new music but since she only listens to R&B, it all basically sounds exactly the same as the music that she listened to before. Luckily I got a new pair of headphones which are louder than my old pair, so I am successfully drowning out her music with my own. I got new music as well, NOT in the same genre that I had before...er...well, since I listen to many genres of music, that's not exactly true. Let's just say that it doesn't all sound the same. I got some new Enter the Haggis (or older ETH, I should say), which is exciting. They are definitely one of my favorite bands of all time. I also followed Brian's advice and downloaded some Radiohead and Leonard Cohen. Can you tell I'm a fan? :-P Other than that, my week at home was pretty uneventful. We have a new dog, Molly, and she's a sweetheart, if a little high strung. It's nice to be back at school in my regular routine, but I'm not looking forward to the school work. It was nice to have a break.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Home for the Holidays!

Tonight I'm going to get on a train, and I will get home tomorrow afternoon. Yay! I am looking forward to eating a home cooked meal (mac & cheese, mommy?), seeing my friends and family, getting my Enter the Haggis tshirt from my dad (signed by the band!), and, most of all, NOT HAVING TO LISTEN TO MY ROOMMATE'S MUSIC FOR A WEEK! I am so sick of R&B, it's not even funny. Finally, some music variation (you see, even if I put on my headphones and listen to my music, I can still hear hers, and it ruins it). Other than that, we get along quite well, but I'm seriously hoping that she's going to get some new music over break. If I have to hear her 20 favorite songs ever again, I'm going to go crazy. Okay, my rant is done now.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Pushing Daisies

Possibly the cutest, wittiest show on television right now, "Pushing Daisies" is a must see. It's playing on ABC and stars Lee Pace, Anna Friel ("Goal!"), Kristin Chenowith ("Wicked"), and Ellen Greene ("Little Shop of Horrors"). The basic idea is that Ned can touch dead people and bring them back to life, but if he leaves them alive for more than a minute something else has to die to take their place. Also, if he touches them again, they are dead forever and nothing can bring them back. Ned works with Private Investigator Emerson Cod to solve murders (by asking the victims who killed them) and collect the reward. One of the murders Ned has to solve is the murder of his childhood sweetheart, but once he wakes her up, he can't bring himself to make her dead again. Although they are in love, he is unable to touch her or she will be dead forever, which causes some complications in their relationship. This may sound lame or somewhat morbid, but it is actually a very clever show. The dialogue is made up of silly and witty banter, and there are many little digs at society (such as the designer of a new, eco-friendly car who drives a Hummer). Not only that, but the ridiculous coincidences, bright colors, and clever jokes keep the show from turning into a morbid and horrifying crime show. I would strongly recommend checking it out, even if you think that you won't like it. One of my friends was skeptical, but now she's hooked. Go figure. It's even child friendly.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

It's all about me

So my mommy tagged me for a Meme. I guess I'm supposed to tell you 10 Random Things About Me. And, honestly, who WOULDN'T want to know more about me? :-P So, here goes:

1. My favorite animal is a raccoon. There was a family living under the deck at my grandparents' old house, and I used to watch them for hours. My grandma fed them, and they would come right up to the glass doors if they didn't know you were watching them. It was so cool.

2. I used to be a huge Lord of the Rings geek (and still am, secretly). I can tell you just about anything about the movies and the books. So, if you have a question about LOTR, you know who to ask. :-)

3. My two favorite places to be are doing theater or at a Quaker Teen Retreat (which I am, sadly, too old for now).

4. I have a major fear of sharks. Seriously, I can't even watch kids movies with underwater attacks without freaking out.

5. I HATE eggs. I think they're the most disgusting food on the planet. I don't mind them as ingredients in cakes and stuff, but any kind of eggy food (scrambled eggs, omelets, quiche, etc.) makes me feel sick. Even the smell of them makes me sick.

6. My guilty pleasure is chick lit/flicks. I love sappy, romantic movies and books, no matter how awful they are. Well... there is such a thing as too awful to stand, but very rarely do I find something like that.

7. I love to sing.

8. I used to want to be a Marine Biologist (what happened, you ask? Well, the shark phobia didn't help. Plus I hated science in high school and realized that the only reason I wanted to be a Marine Biologist was so I could play with dolphins. I'm more of an English/Arts person than a science/math person anyway)

9. I listen to all kinds of music, but I especially like soft rock. You know, stuff I can sing along with.

10. I know just about everything about movies, and if I don't know something, I will be on imdb within 5 minutes to look it up.

Um... I tag... crayons and Dr. Monkey von Monkerstein

Boo sundays!

It's cold, it's rainy, I'm sick, and I have two exams tomorrow. Seriously, Sundays suck. (Alliteration. Go me! :-P) It's probably the most depressing day of the week. I mean, the weekend's over, and it's usually gray come winter time. I don't like Sundays. Nope. Not at all. Especially not when I have a cold. And two tests the next day. :-(

Movie Review: Half Nelson

First off, let me say that THIS IS NOT YOUR ORDINARY TEACHER MOVIE. (You hear that, Mom? :-P) It is not, I repeat, NOT, about a rich white teacher whose revolutionary and controversial teaching style changes the lives of his poor, inner city students. If you want to see a movie like that, go watch "Freedom Writers" or something.
However, if you are looking for a bittersweet movie about real people with real problems and the connections that they develop, then this movie is for you. It's about the relationship that cocaine addict teacher Dan Dunn develops with one of his students and how they take care of one another. It's an amazing movie, and Ryan Gosling definitely deserved the Oscar nomination (although I still maintain that the award was rightfully awarded to Forrest Whittaker). Anyway, this movie is fantastic. The storyline is very realistic and easy to relate to (on some level), and the camera work is PHENOMENAL. I really enjoyed watching it. Plus it has a lot of good political comments in it. Apart from the drug addiction, Ryan Gosling's character reminds me of some of the teachers that I had growing up. My mom has a problem with movies that show how one teacher is going against the grain and teaching students who otherwise didn't want to learn because she says that there are tons of teachers doing that every day. This movie doesn't do that. It's more about how everyone has problems and we need to reach out to one another or we won't survive. I don't want to give anything else away, but you should really go out and rent this movie. Note: It's not appropriate for children.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Movie Review: The Shawshank Redemption

So, it turns out that a couple of my friends have never seen "The Shawshank Redemption." The rest of us were shocked, so we all watched it together last night. What a great movie. This was my second time seeing it, and it was just as good as, if not better than, the first time. Seriously, that movie is made of amazing quotes and wonderful acting. As my friend Zack said, "Morgan Freeman is God." (Get it? :-P) But seriously, he's an amazing actor, as is Tim Robbins. They both did a fantastic job in this movie, and the story itself is just phenomenal. (Why does Stephen King waste his time writing horror stories when he could be writing more stuff like this?) It's a heartbreaking movie, especially the whole thing with Tommy Williams. It makes me want to cry every time. And Brooks? (On a random side note, does anyone else think that Brooks looks a little like Hoggle from "Labyrinth", or is it just me?) Anyway, this is probably one of the best movies I've ever seen, and if you haven't seen it, you are seriously missing out. So go out and rent "The Shawshank Redemption." ...Only maybe don't watch it if you're just in the mood for something light and entertaining. This is for one of those times when you want to see something incredible.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Movie Review: The Usual Suspects

Today in my film analysis class, we watched "The Usual Suspects." It's a 1995 crime drama with a twist, starring Kevin Spacey, Gabriel Byrne, and Benicio Del Toro. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was hilarious and engaging. The banter and one liners were very witty. I have to say, I was slightly disappointed with the twist, because I called it. Although it made me feel great about myself that I had figured out this supposedly impossibly surprising twist, I felt a little let down. I mean, it's supposed to catch you completely unawares, but I figured it out pretty early on. I won't give anything away, but it's something to keep your eyes open for should you choose to watch it. All in all, it was a great movie. A little bloody, but very entertaining. I highly recommend checking it out.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Whale Rider

Last night I had the sudden urge to watch the movie "Whale Rider" because I hadn't seen it in over a year. It's such a beautiful movie, and I highly recommend that anyone who hasn't seen it go out and rent it. It's worth it. However, I think it's even more important that everyone read the book. It is so much more detailed and beautiful than the movie. That's the nature of these things. You can't fit everything into a movie, so some important things get cut. In this case, it is Kahu's uncle Rawiri's trip to Australia and Papua New Guinea, which opens his eyes to racism and shows him what the world is really like. (For those who have seen the movie, in the book the main character, Paikea, is actually named Kahu. Both Paikea and Kahutia Te Rangi were names for the ancient Whale Rider). The characters are very different in the movie, too. In the book, Nanny Flowers, Kahu's grandmother, is more of a comical character, and Rawiri is the leader of a biker gang. As for Kahu's grandfather, Koro, he is much more indifferent to her in the book. In the movie they excuse his behavior a little bit, but in the book he shows almost no affection to Kahu despite all her efforts to get his attention. It is very sad. All in all, both the book and the movie are very good but, as is often the case, the book is much better. In fact, ever since they made the movie, the book has been permanently added to the curriculum for New Zealand schools. How cool is that? I really want to read the book, but sadly, I don't have a copy here. My mom's best friend's copy is sitting on my bookshelf at home (you should probably give that back to her, mom), and I don't want to bring it here. I found a copy online for $5 which I am considering ordering, but I want to think it over before I buy anything. Money is tight in college, after all. Still, I can spare $5, right? Haha. Now go and read! I command you!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Movie Review: The Hills Have Eyes

So, in the spirit of Halloween, a bunch of people on my floor got together to watch scary movies tonight. Now, I hate scary movies. I've never liked them. I'm a bit of a wimp. Anyway, they told me that they were watching "The Hills Have Eyes" and that I should come and join them. I went with some trepidation (I do not want to have nightmares for the next month), but it turns out they were watching the ORIGINAL movie from 1977. So I decided to sit it out, figuring it couldn't be THAT bad. I was completely right. It was one of the funniest movies I have ever seen. The blood was literally red paint, and the mutant people or whatever they were looked like poor representations of Native Americans. It was quite racist, in fact. Here were these tribal type cannibal crazy people attacking a cute little white family where the children have blond hair and blue eyes. It was pretty ridiculous. Not only that, but the family was soooo dumb. Seriously, they just kept doing one stupid thing after another, and the girl would not shut up. She just screamed and screamed and whimpered and screamed even when she wasn't getting attacked. I mean, okay, yeah, that's pretty emotionally scarring, but do you have to be so loud about it? I'm pretty sure I would just curl up in a corner or something, not scream my lungs out. Especially when there are these mutant people roaming around. I mean, you don't want to give away your location, do you? As I said, the people were really stupid. It was great because the smartest being in the movie was the dog. Seriously, that dog was amazing. It would sneak up behind the mutant people and push them off cliffs and stuff. It even was smart enough to steal one of their massive walkie talkies (yes, the mutants had walkie talkies), and bring it back to the family so they could spy on the mutants. I'm telling you, that was one smart dog. Watching that movie, though, was like watching an episode of Mystery Science Theater or something. It was pretty amazing. The dialog was terrible and the acting was even worse. So, if you want a good laugh, go out and rent this movie. It won't let you down (although it's probably funnier if you watch it with a big group of friends).

Friday, October 26, 2007

I hate rain

It's rainy and cold. I was packing my backpack for school today and thought, "I don't need my umbrella." On my way to class, it started pouring. Go figure. Gray weather makes me tired and unmotivated. All I want to do is curl up in my bed and watch a movie. Luckily, it's a Friday, so I don't have to worry about homework until tomorrow. Right now, I am listening to "Northampton," the newest Enter the Haggis CD. It is cheering me up immensely. They are all so ridiculously talented. I can't wait to see them live!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Midterms are over!

I am finally done with all my midterms. What a relief! I was pretty stressed there for a while. Seriously, if I have to write another essay about why Hamlet isn't a tragic hero or something along those lines, I am going to cry. Besides, Kenneth Branagh has ruined Hamlet for me. I don't even like THINKING about that play anymore. The best way to ruin Shakespeare is to see a terrible performance. Just ask anyone who saw my high school's production of "Romeo & Juliet." Anyway, I'm rambling now, but just be thankful that you don't have to take midterms (if you're out of school). They ruin your life.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Some advertising

This is Enter the Haggis. They are one of my favorite bands of all time. Go out and listen to their music. Also, check out their new blogs! Each member started a blog this year, and they're worth checking out. Here's Brian's blog. You can find all the others on his side bar. Check them out! :-)

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

I'm Keanu Reeves...

Last night I watched "The Matrix Revolutions" with the people who live on my floor, and we had a good laugh at Keanu Reeves' lack of talent. He has one expression that conveys all his emotions, except the only thing it really conveys is, "I'm Keanu Reeves..." And (spoiler) we decided that the real reason that they decided to burn out Neo's eyes was to avoid having to try and make Keanu look sad when Trinity died. I mean, he looked exactly the same with the blindfold on as with it off. Blank. So it was easier to cover his eyes than try and get him to show some real emotion. Haha.

Saturday, October 13, 2007


Today I watched, "Legally Blonde: The Musical" on MTV. It was ridiculous. Absolutely ridiculous. But totally wonderful. To give you an idea of how ridiculous it was, the songs are named things like "Omigod You Guys", "Bend and Snap", and "Whipped into Shape". It's halfway making fun of the movie "Legally Blonde" and musicals in general and halfway serious. If you like musicals, it's pretty great. And the best part? Emmett, the Luke Wilson character (if you've seen the movie) is played by Christian Borle, who played Herbert in the original cast of "Spamalot". Basically, I love him just for that. I couldn't watch him in "Legally Blonde" without imagining him singing "Where Are You?" in that ridiculous Herbert voice. It was amazing. So, if you like musicals and don't mind when things are corny and silly, definitely watch "Legally Blonde: The Musical". It's on again tomorrow night...hint hint.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Warning: DO NOT see this movie!!

Okay, I will admit that I have not actually SEEN the movie "The Seeker" nor do I intend to. I have, however, seen the trailer (it made me cry), and I LOVE the book "The Dark is Rising" on which the movie was based. When I first discovered that they were making a movie of it, I screamed. Literally. Ask my parents. You see, "The Dark is Rising" was one of the books on my list of movies that I would like to make. It would make a FANTASTIC movie if done well. It is a marvelous story. So, although I was upset that someone else had beat me to it, I decided to give them the benefit of the doubt. I mean, sure, it looked like yet another stale, packaged Hollywood fantasy movie, but I could be wrong.

Unfortunately, I was right. The trailer made me cry, as I mentioned before. I mean, they made Will Stanton AMERICAN! When the whole story is based on Welsh mythology! The outcries of angry fans resounded across the IMDB message boards. Also (spoiler alert) his brothers are terribly mean to him. Not the case in the book. Will's family is supposed to be loving and supportive. Now, normally I don't put much stock in movie reviews, but when 82% of reviewers say this movie sucked and the average movie goers (from die-hard "Dark is Rising" fans to those who have never even heard of the books) agree...well, the information is in front of you, folks.

I might be able to cut the movie some slack if the filmmakers even cared a TINY BIT about the story. However, the director, David L. Cunningham, has said that he doesn't even think the books provide good movie material and that he doesn't, in fact, even like fantasy movies OR movies for children. So why on Earth did he decide to turn this wonderful, classic story into one of the worst examples of children's fantasy film? Not only that but Ian McShane who played Merriman Lyon, the mentor character, didn't even WANT the role. Please explain to me why a director who doesn't like the material and an actor who dislikes his character decided to go ahead and make this movie anyway. It all translates into money, and it is disgusting.

So, let's recap. Unenthusiastic crew and cast. Doesn't follow the story remotely (not only are important characters changed. Some very important characters are reportedly missing from the movie entirely). Lots of plot holes (according to just about every review I've read). This movie makes the 4th Harry Potter movie look good, and that's pretty hard to do.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Movie Review: "Mon Oncle"

For my film analysis class, we watched "Mon Oncle" as an example of a movie where the plot is pretty much superfluous and the setting is the most important part. It was made in 1958 by Jacques Tati, and it's a wonderful movie. It was very funny, but not necessarily in the laugh out loud way that we're used to today. "Mon Oncle" contrasts modern and old Paris in the 1950s and gently pokes fun at both lifestyles. I have to say, though, the old fashioned life style is a lot more appealing. I absolutely LOVE Mr. Hulot's house. If you watch the movie, you will understand. Since it's neither plot or character oriented, there's not much to say about it. Or, rather, there's not much to say that can fully describe the movie. It's kind of...Charlie Chaplinesque in a way, but Mr. Hulot isn't as overly comic as Chaplin is. The best thing I can think to say about the movie is this: Imagine you (the viewer) are a character in the movie. Or, better yet, imagine the characters are real people. When you walk down the street and pass people, you don't know anything about them outside of that singular experience. You don't know what's going on in their head or if they have some deep inner turmoil. The characters in "Mon Oncle" are the same way. There's no big character development or even much of a story line. It's simply a slice of life from Paris in the late 1950s. It's very beautiful, and if you don't mind slower movies, I would highly recommend it.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Quote of the Day

"Do not use semicolons. They are transvestite hermaphrodites representing absolutely nothing." - Man Without a Country by Kurt Vonnegut

My friend Jack loaned me this book to read, and it's hilarious. He also loaned me about 3000 pages worth of French classics. My "homework" is to read "Le Miserables", "The Count of Monte Cristo", and "The Man in the Iron Mask." That's in addition to my REAL homework. Thank you, Jack. I'm glad you're looking out for my intellectual well being. Not. :-P

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Why I Hate Hamlet and Kenneth Branagh

So last year for our last project in English we had to read the play "Hamlet", watch two movie interpretations, and write an analytic essay about the movies in comparison to the play and one another. Now, the essay part didn't bug me at all. I love film analysis essays. The problem was, we had to watch this god-awful 5 hour movie directed by and starring Kenneth Branagh. All the actors were good actors, but the movie was just put together and directed horribly. The actors were either screaming or whispering, the lighting was almost fluorescent, the soundtrack didn't fit the action at all, and Kenneth Branagh was far too charismatic to play Hamlet. Ever since then, I've held a grudge against Kenneth Branagh (despite the fact that I enjoyed "Dead Again"), and even the mention of the play "Hamlet" has made me frustrated. Cut to this year. We were assigned "Hamlet" for my Intro to Drama class. I skimmed it to refresh my memory and turned in the summary that we were assigned. I didn't bother reading the entire thing because I'd already read it twice and watched three film interpretations of it. I got full credit on my summary, and we were going over the play in class when our professor announced that we were going to watch the "closet scene" from three different films. I thought, "Hmm, I'm guessing Mel Gibson, Kenneth Branagh, and Ethan Hawke." I was right. As soon as Branagh's name was announced I started getting frustrated. And when we watched it I wanted to scream. HE'S SO OVERDRAMATIC! It drives me nuts! He's too forceful for Hamlet! Hamlet is supposed to be emo and sulky and indecisive! Grr. So now all of you guys get to hear my angry rant. Lucky you.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Quote of the Day

Sorry I haven't posted in a while. Things have been crazy. Here's today's quote.

"Stop displacing your thingy stuff!" - Nel

I believe the word you're searching for is "anger", my dear. Tempers run high and vocabulary goes down the drain when you're up until all hours making papier mâché eggs for "Charlotte's Web". Luckily, nothing diffuses a tense situation like your best friend saying something ridiculous.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Quote of the Day #2

This is Sunday's official quote.

"I'll draw a smiley face on your forehead, bitch!" - Laurel

My friend Laurel gets crazy during English class. Haha.

Quote of the Day #1

Even though it's REALLY early on Sunday morning, let's just pretend it's still Saturday.

"Only boys who wear their wellies have a chance with me." - Gaelic Storm, "Kelly's Wellies"

"Kelly's Wellies" is a song about a boy who can't afford shoes so he has to wear Wellington boots all year round. All the other boys make fun of them, but Kevin Kelly gets his payback when they get to high school and all of the girls like him as opposed to the other boys.

I met Gaelic Storm!

So today I went to Irish Fest because my favorite band, Gaelic Storm, was playing there. My friend Chloë went with me. She'd never heard Gaelic Storm before but thought it sounded really fun. When we got to the fairgrounds, Gaelic Storm was finishing their 4:30 show. We listened until they stopped playing, then went over and got in line for autographs. This was my 4th GS show, and I've already gotten their autographs 2 times before, so I decided to get my picture taken as well. I managed to get pictures with 3 of the members, (in order) Patrick Murphy, Pete Purvis, and Ryan Lacey. They're my favorite members, although I have a soft spot for Ryan because 2 years ago I went to one of their concerts at a bar back home, and my little sister really wanted to go but it was too late for her. I'd promised her that I'd get her their autographs, so I bought her a $2 bumber sticker and gotten the band to sign it. Everyone just signed their name when I told them who it was for, except for Ryan who wrote something along the lines of, "Grace, I'm sorry you couldn't be here. Ryan Lacey." It was really sweet. Anyway, back to today's show. So, after I got my picture taken with the band, Chloë and I walked around the fair grounds for a while. Then, at about 8:00, we went and stood at the front of the stage. Gaelic Storm wasn't playing until 9:30, and there was another band before them, but we knew that if we didn't get up there early, we weren't going to be able to get that close. The band who played first wasn't that good, and it was pretty uncomfortable because we were squished up against the barrier at the front and surrounded by drunk people. One guy spilled his beer on the back of Chloë's leg. It was gross. All that was worth it, though, because we had a great view of Gaelic Storm. For those who don't know, Gaelic Storm was the Irish band who played in the movie "Titanic." The members have changed a lot over the years, but the band currently consists of Patrick Murphy (Vocals, accordion, harmonica, spoons, bodhran), Steve Twigger (vocals, guitar, mandolin), Jesse Burns (fiddle), Pete Purvis (bagpipes, uilleann pipes, penny whistle, backup vocals), and Ryan Lacey (percussion, backup vocals). They're great on cd, but SO much fun to see live because they obviously really enjoy playing together and, also, Patrick is really really funny (as you can see by the picture he's quite the clown). The concert was, of course, amazing, but the coolest part was that Pat saw me and Chloë standing at the front of the stage and, recognizing us from earlier that afternoon, waved at us. Later, when the drunks were getting really rowdy, he looked at me again, winked, and crossed himself as if to say, "God help you." Haha. Finally, when they were singing the song "Drink the Night Away", they started throwing plastic Gaelic Storm shot glasses out to the crowd. Patrick grabbed one, pointed at me and tossed it to me, but, unfortunately, the guy next to me reached over and grabbed it out of the air. I was disappointed because that one was given to me specifically by Pat. There was nothing I could do, though, so I let it go. All in all, the concert was really fun and worth the $8 that I payed to get in. Plus, I was really thrilled by the whole "meet the band" and "Patrick recognizing Anna" things. Sometimes it pays to be one of the only sober people in the audience. I find that the band likes you more and is more interactive with you, if only because it means they can avoid interacting with the drunk people around you who are all striving to get their attention. Yay for being short, blond, and sober! :-P

Friday, September 7, 2007

Detroit, here I come?

So, I've been invited to serve on the high school subcommittee for the 2008 FGC (Friends General Conference) Gathering in Johnstown, PA. The only problem is, the first meeting is held in Detroit, MI, in two weeks, while I'm going to school in PA, and the Johnstown meeting is going to be held in May, when I'm back home in the midwest, so the timing really sucks (That's right, mom, it SUCKS). However, it sounds like they're offering me full financial aid on my travel expenses (I'm making sure to clarify it before buying my plane tickets), so I may be able to serve after all. Yay! I'm excited, because I get to plan things like business meeting and the out-trip, even though I'm not in the high school group anymore. So, it looks like I'll be getting to do some free traveling. :-)

Quote of the Day

"Shouldn't you be off spreading religiosity to the fuzzy wuzzies?" - Captain Malcolm "Mal" Reynolds, "Firefly"

Mal doesn't take to kindly to religion, not since the rebels were defeated by the Alliance in the Battle of Serenity Valley despite his many prayers. He counters any of Shepherd Book's attempts to enlighten him with sarcasm and wit. Sigh. I love him.

Class cancelled?

So, I went to my Astronomy lecture today, and there was nobody there. That's extremely odd, considering I was running a bit late and there are at least 300 people in my class. Usually by the time I get there, most of the seats are filled and the professor is up on the stage setting up his power point presentation and getting ready to begin the day's lecture. So, you can imagine how walking into an empty lecture hall threw me a little bit. There was no note on the door or anything, and I don't remember Professor Stein mentioning that class was either a) cancelled or b) being held in a different place. Well, what's a girl to do? I decided not to worry about it and instead went to the bank to clear up a money issue and got some lunch. I mean, it's not like they take attendance or anything, and the notes are always posted online. As long as I read the chapter in my textbook and do well on the tests, I'll be fine. Yay for more free time today! :-P

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Music and Lyrics

So, I just finished watching "Music and Lyrics" starring Drew Barrymore, Hugh Grant, and Brad Garrett. In general, I quite enjoyed it. It was a little cliché, as most romantic comedies are, but it was sweet and less formulaic than most. Hugh Grant was, well, Hugh Grant. Minus the jerk persona that he usually has in movies, though. His character, Alex Fletcher, a has been 80s pop artist, was very sweet and charming and not smarmy in the least. Drew Barrymore's character was neurotic but lovable. The music was very enjoyable, although by the time I finally saw the movie, the 80s pop (or should I say Pop!) video was a bit old. You see, my sister saw this movie several months ago and watched the music video nonstop on YouTube for a couple of weeks, so I'd already seen it, oh, about 10 times. Still, it was silly, and I quite enjoyed watching Hugh Grand prancing around with 80s hair. Anyway, back to the movie. The plot, as I said, was a little generic, but entertaining nonetheless. I'm a sucker for romance movies, anyway. :-P The dialogue was actually surprisingly good. There were some pretty witty lines in there. I did feel, however, that Drew Barrymore's inner conflict was a bit unresolved. They just kind of brushed over the subject. In fact, her whole storyline, her past, felt a bit forced. Other than that, though, it was a pretty good movie.

Quote of the Day

"You can't stand on a wall! You'd get footprints all over the wallpaper!" - Big Bird, "Big Bird in China"

This is Big Bird's response to being informed that he is actually standing on the Great Wall. What a great guy. Smart, too.

The Band Downstairs

So there is, apparently, a band living underneath me. I heard them practicing this weekend and was very confused as to where the music was coming from, but it soon became apparent that 1. it was live music, and 2. it was coming from the 9th floor. They're actually pretty decent. Anyway, I met one of the band members in the elevator today, and he very graciously asked me if we could hear them and if it was bothering us. He was wondering how much of the dorm they were annoying. :-P Well, it seems like it's only my room and maybe the rooms on either side of us that can hear them, so I told him it wasn't that bad. He said if they ever start annoying us, we should just go downstairs and knock on the door and tell them. The only problem is, he didn't know exactly which room they're in. Haha. Oh well. I'm sure we can figure it out, and they don't practice at unreasonable hours or anything. So, from now on, I will have the pleasure of hearing live music without having to even leave my dorm room or pay a single dollar. Well, other than the $5,000 or so that I'm spending on my dorm itself.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Quote of the Day

Before I post my first "Quote of the Day", I'd like to explain where these quotes come from. I keep a small journal where I write down quotes that strike me. They can be funny or inspirational and come from many sources: movies, books, tv shows, my friends, myself. I'll also offer a short explanation if needed. So, on to the first quote!

"I like airplanes. I want ice cream!" - Nel Bailey

Nel is my best friend back home. This is an example of how her mind somehow jumps from one thing to another. Even I can't explain it, and I practically live with the girl. Haha.

First Post on My New Blog

So this is the first post on my blog. I'm afraid it won't be very interesting. I don't have much to say. This week has been fairly uneventful, apart from the drunken football players wandering in and out of my room at random hours like 3 a.m. this weekend. (Not to worry, they're friends of my roommate and are very polite. Just drunk. :-P) Also, my friend Chloë and I have developed an addiction to the TV show "Firefly." Well, SHE'S developed an addiction. I've been addicted to it for quite a while and own all the DVDs. Unfortunately, Fox sucks and canceled it after only 12 episodes, so I've seen them all several times, and I'll have to wait until 2012 for the rights to expire and Sci-Fi to buy them and restart the show. Oh well. Such is life.