Dr. No

…was the movie of choice in film class last night. Themes, such as tradition, culture, and dystopia were what we were supposed to study and know. Bond, in Sean Connery fashion was quite the dapper guy, dribbling all over Honey (Ursula Andress–who’s voice was dubbed with someone else). The funniest scene of the whole movie for me was Bond emerging from his hiding place on Dr. No’s island to drool over bikini clad Honey, who has made it to the island all by herself in search of conch shells to sell (she’s enterprising anyway). Bond, on the other hand, had to rely on the CIA and a local to get him to the island. Honey, of course, tells him to leave her alone, she’ll be fine. So, as Bond movies often go, he doesn’t and they get hunted down and shot at a few times. Bond, of course, decides after all the shooting to save the girl, but the shots have left her boat full of holes. Bond then turns to the other guy and yells frantically: “What do we do with her now?” Smarmy.

Even though

…I’m tired from driving 6 hours uphill in the midst of raging snowstorm flung from the treaded blackness of some mesmirizing semi in front of me, even though twice I had to stop and let the deer cross, because that’s what the sign says: deer crossing, and I had to stop every 2 kilometers after the sign, and even though my neck was sore from the extra load of guild meeting material weighing as heavy as a moose on my brain, (sorry, no pictures to prove anything, even though I might’ve been able to, but with the coffee cup in one hand and the cd case in the other, there were no hands left for the camera) and even though this weight is still heavy now, although now it only feels as heavy as a small grey car (mine, because I know how heavy it is), I was fascinated with how many times the tale of James Frey steered in my direction. I began to wonder on the ride home if the single-minded focus on the one path in the middle of the snow was our perception of the truth/reality and whether the snow layered and blowing around the sides and in-between each car/truck was everything else. Does there need to be boundaries set for non-fiction? Do we need to have factual truth? What is factual truth? Do we need to create a genre in-between fact and fiction? Hmm, here’s a hmm moment: tonight my newly created genre is called blogging. It’s full of the in-between.

Sometimes

…the best thing about staying home alone is reading a good book. Or reading a good book on the internet. There’s something slightly surreal and yet subtly soothing about turning the pages of a notebook written by Da Vinci, or by Jane Austen, or seeing the original Alice, or simply flipping through the pages of the oldest printed book, a scroll called Diamond Sutra (although I had some trouble with this one). I hope they continue to do this and eventually fill their site with amazing works.

Last night

I was a bit under the weather, popped 2 ibuprofen before I went to bed and proceeded to dream strange dreams all night. The one I remember the best was the dream of blogger comments. It went on for miles, well, not really miles, but a long flowing waterway of comments. A river of people. I don’t remember why there were so many, I only remembered scrolling down, reading comment after comment, down, and down. Mostly I think this was a dream of people, the connections we make in life, the way we come together or come apart.

The same extraordinary connection of people sometimes meanders like a small stream into real life. Today I had the chance meeting with someone new, and in the midst of conversation, he turned out to be the younger brother of a good friend from another town. We both dropped our jaws at the way the amazing world is really so very small. (This reminds me of line from a movie (Casablanca) “Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, [he] walks into mine.”) Why and how is it we feel the need to connect again and again?

The rest of this week

…will be spent reading Edward Bellamy’s Looking Backward: 2000- 1887. Tomorrow night the rockstar and I are going to the late showing of Three…Extremes at the RPL–or that’s the plan so far. We are to do a review of a movie for Contemporary Film and this one looks like a movie(s) I might not otherwise see. At least it doesn’t look boring. I’m also doing a small review of “Cockaigne“, the satirical poem about the land of excess, and for good measure, trying to start some papers that are due in Feburary. I’m trying to get as much accomplished as possible before I exit this confined urban state, abandon–at least for 2 weeks– the ivory tower, the excess of city-built sky and replace it with snow cones and a prairie-colony sky that stretches with the whim’s eye, horizontal blinking captured in each rise and fall of my pen.

Monday

Boredom might be the key phrase for yesterday (sorry this has nothing to do with the election). First I blanked my brain through a particularly unstimulating Bronte sister lecture involving literary and non-literary research methods–sounds like fun, eh?–and, in particular, a lengthy discussion on the conception-to-publication-of “The Prisoner–A Fragment“. (This makes me curious as to the reception of poetry from our generation, say 150-200 years from now. What will be remembered, written about it, who will be included/excluded, what kind of poetry will endure?)

From there I was happy go to film class and I moved on to the wildly stimulating(tongue in cheek) movie L’Avventura. Not that it was a bad film, it is part of the modernist film movement arising in the 50-60’s, and even though some of it was engaging, much of it was slow and pointless (or seemingly so). The film plays with the audience through the narrative, incorporates a more artistic cinematography, and uses the camera differently to include the audience as a part of the film. In particular, the camera initally appeared to be excluding the audience from seeing the characters faces; however, this gave me the impression I was in the film, standing right behind the characters, even to the point where a few times I wanted to physically move the character out of the way so I could see what was happening. Mainly it was full of noise and movement: cars, trains, boats, helicopters, people moving in and out of vehicles, restless people moving mechanically about their lives. The constant movement was a reflection of culture, the desire for something more, the desire to keep ourselves amused. Paradox in a boring film about boredom.

My portrait


Ok. I know–not a very good likeness, but I had some time on my hands and I thought it might be fun to recreate me through a computer drawing. I might try a few more as this was my first real try, but I’m definitely sending one of these in as my portrait.