Um, yeah, I should say something.
I suppose I can update you on my life, but that’d be boring.
I could post another politically-charged free-write, but this blog already has way to many of those.
I could bitch and piss and moan and whine about fifty other things, but that would be…not good.
I guess I’m just updating to say that once I figure out something of interest to write about, I will write about it. Until then, hold tight, my readers, and I’ll re-blog a thing or two for you of interest so you aren’t left totally in the dark!
Normally, New Year’s Resolutions are a bunch of royal phooey in my head. Most people don’t carry through with their resolutions. And while most are made with sincere intent, many are just fads, like the typical ’10 lbs lost by February’ resolutions. If I’m going to make a resolution that is meant to make me a better, more self-fulfilled person, I’m going to personalize the shit out of my resolution so that I have the greatest chance of success, right? There really should be a lot of planning and thought that goes into creating a single resolution.
Well, guess what? I made two! One to improve upon a flaw, and one to open my mind to something new.
RESOLUTION A: I will *permanently* beat my sugar addiction, and be able to painlessly refuse a piece of chocolate by June.
Don’t laugh. I do, indeed, have a tragic addiction to both simple and complex sugars (which has been scientifically proven to be possible). It has, I believe, led to the fact that I feel absolutely gross even when I eat something healthy, like a salad. My theory is, without sugar, there will be no guilt, and my food phobias will be significantly reduced. Sugar apparently can inhibit brain function, and I have candy at least once daily to curb my craving.
I understand this challenge will be painful. I could possibly experience withdrawal symptoms similar to an alcoholic’s hangover. Candy surrounds me in stores, malls, and even in the office. Learning to resist my favorite food in the Universe is going to kick my ass so hard I could possibly die an emotional death if I don’t do this right. That’s why I added the second part of this first resolution. It gives me a realistic time frame in which to overcome Stage A, which is sugar-toxification, and transition to Stage B: ignoring the cravings.
I’m also doing this not just to curb a bad habit, but to prove to myself that I can do it. I’ve always been convinced I have minimal will power. I will say I’ll wake up at 6AM to hit the gym, then hit the snooze button and lock my cat out of my room so he won’t disturb me when I sleep in until 8:30. I’ve always been a spur-of-the-moment type, and when it comes to laziness, I’m about as miserably and tragically endowed as they come. If I don’t feel it, I rarely press through the laziness and overcome it in order to do what I need to.
RESOLUTION B: I will take up archery, and shoot three bulls-eyes by the end of 2012.
I am TOTALLY not doing this because of Disney/Pixar’s Brave coming out next year, and doing this will completely make me the ideal candidate to cosplay Princess Merida…despite us having the same hair, same personality, same heritage, and same degree of epic awesomeness (and I can just tell this from the trailer).
No, I’m doing this to counter-act some of my lazy personality. In my area, the closest archery club is 15+ miles away. This one will help me built up my motivation, and take on a hobby that is actually active. You know, something other than reading, writing, and needlepointing. I’ve actually privately wanted to take this up for a few years, and now that I’m not afraid to drive anymore, I think I can make that trip 15 miles down the freeway once or twice a week. I went to a summer camp for several summers in a row as a child, and the camp had an archery range. I remember getting a bulls-eye on my second attempt, and was one of only a handful of kids who could even hit the target.
This will give me something to practice and perfect. It is something that will take me time, and again, this is why I added a second claus to the resolution that paints a realistic time frame.
Well, fair readers, wish me luck on this quest! I will probably keep you updated on it if you care to follow me! *deep breath*
ASIDE: The first resolution will not commence before January 1st to accomidate for consumption of holiday goodies, of course!
What can one honestly say about virginity? If you’re a man, it’s something to be ashamed of. If you’re a woman/unmarried Christian, it’s something to be proud of but still keep hush-hush. If you’re a teenager, it’s a festering sore on the face of your reputation no matter what way you look at it. Does having it make you innocent? Childish? Naïve? Prudish? Does letting it go precociously make you a promiscuous embarrassment, but somehow simultaneously mature and admirable?
There is no doubt, virginity is a massively confusing and touchy subject. Maybe it’s because I have about 500 other things to worry about at the present moment (and the fact that I lost mine quite a while ago anyway), but virginity doesn’t really do anything for me either way. The only thing I associated with my virginity was curiosity. Then when I lost it, I noticed my voice was a little deeper (and my head was spinning from the copious amounts of alcohol I’d consumed prior to the event). That’s really it.
I see no reason whatsoever to value virginity. In the ancient and medieval times, it was basically the only way one could be assured that kids born to a wealthy couple were legitimate to inherit the title/cash one day. So many religions are honestly, quite out of date (and out of context) when they insist on virginity as a young person’s (mainly a young woman’s) most prized asset. It’s like all society has left of a bride-price, or dowry. I personally, place zero value on it myself, but the insane (and sometimes high creepy) lengths some microsocieties go to preserve virginity in girls is horrific.
Sure, I could go on about purity rings and how ridiculous they are, or how creepy those father/daughter ceremonies are when the daughter pledges to keep her hymen intact until her wedding night to her father, even though in my humble opinion, a girl’s sexual status has nothing to do with her dad. I could even go ranting about how most of these ‘True Love Waits’ movements actually harm youth in that they don’t present alternatives to prevent STDs and pregnancy in case someone slips into temptation, then demonizes those who do ‘make THE mistake.’
But instead, I’m going to shake my head and sigh woefully at the new TLC show that documents ‘old virgins’ and their plight to lose it as fast as they can…or at their wedding. Yes, TLC, who brought you such wonders as ‘The Rise and Fall of Kate Gosselin’s Priorities,’ and ‘I’m Worthless Unless My Uterus Is Full of Baby,’ and let’s not forget ‘I Steal People’s Newspapers So I Can Use the Coupons to Buy Ungodly Amounts of Antifreeze.’
My personal favorite…’Adventures at Grandma’s House.’
It’s called Virgin Diaries, and basically it just follows around thirtysomethings who, for whatever reason, haven’t done the nasty yet. Some are unwilling, some are EXTREMELY unwilling, and some are Christians. By the end of the show, some will have lost their maidenhoods, some will have realized that perhaps waiting until later isn’t such a bad idea. Hey, Steve Carrell got a movie out of it.
I don’t think I’d have such a problem with this show if it didn’t decide to focus on such stereotypical ‘virgins.’ You know what I mean. Every person in the show was either painfully immature and childlike, or a fat nerd. I also wouldn’t have much to say about it if the focus wasn’t on DESPERATE virgins hoping to lose it instantly. If virginity was a part of their daily life and they weren’t all OBSESSING over it, fine. Who am I to condemn what society values as a whole? If we want to see virgins, fine.
I still fail to see how virginity can be such a goddamned obsession. Honestly, I was more anxious about losing my memories of middle school.
In the end, it’s just another brick in the wall of a societal institution that is sex-crazed. Like everything else. *UGH!* I need to find a different conclusion for half of my media rants.
Anywho, I have a proposal for TLC: live up to your name, and I will actually give a damn about your programming again. You know, TLC stands for The Learning Channel, right? Not The Litter Channel, The Loser Channel, The Little People Channel, or The Lunatic Channel. Lately the only things I’ve learned from TLC are that gypsies in Ireland throw slammin’ epic weddings, and the Italian Mafia has a setup in Hoboken disguised as a specialty cake shop.
It came from an ex-dog of ours who now resides in the Blessed Kennel Club in the Sky, Finn. Finn was a hairy, hairy German Shepherd/Collie mixture, and he shed so often our poor Dyson couldn’t handle it. But the one place we could never seem to get all the hair off of him was the place around his touchas. Finn wouldn’t let us touch his hindquarters, and as a result of neglect, the hair there matted into a giant hair clump just beneath his tail, and it drove my mother insane. However, on his last Christmas on Earth, Finn magically shed the giant hair clod, right beneath the tree, a present for my mother’s sanity. She tied a red ribbon around it and placed it on the tree, dubbing it ‘The Magic Dingleberry of Christmas.’ In subsequent years without our beloved doggy, Mumsie still tears up a little when pulling the blessed wad of butt-fur out of the ornament case.
This is probably the most perfect example of why seemingly stupid traditions to one household may carry emotional memories and lots of love in another. We are probably the only family in the country that worships a hair clump at the holidays. Of course, that is only one of many of our family traditions that are ungodly immature and annoying, but yet we still manage to hold close to our hearts. The Magic Dingleberry might not even be the most profound, but it was the first one that came to mind.
But while I get into the heart of this post, let me relay to you a conversation between my sister and I (verbatim) during a viewing of the Rankin-Bass Holiday Classic ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’:
SISTER: Holy s***! Santa was a ginger?!? Mrs. Claus too??
ME: Yeah? So was Dumbledore.
SISTER: Does that mean all gingers grow giant white beards, get magic powers, and walk around in flamingly flamboyant robes with droves of admirers worldwide?
ME: I guess so.
SISTER: Just wondering.
ME: That evil mayor’s face looks like a hamburger.
Apologies to Rankin-Bass for defiling their beloved masterpiece. And believe me, that was the least random of our commentary.
I do adore this time of year. You really can tell a lot about a household by their holiday traditions and how closely they celebrate, if they celebrate at all. Some people are Scrooges. Their houses are bare of any holiday décor, be it Jewish, Moslem, Kwanzaa-ese (?), Christian, Wiccan, secular, etc. Others spare no expense, and buy up every possible version of a Frosty The Snowman 8-foot blowup for the front lawn (an example of this would be my Aunt Robin). Some people sleep in until 10AM, some people get up at the butt-crack of dawn. Some break out the fancy cocoa, bagels, sausage bread, and some just don’t bother with breakfast at all. Every family is different, and I really get into how many combinations of traditions that can manifest on a single block alone.
This is also why I cannot stand the people who insist that ‘Happy Holidays’ is offensive to Christians, who would prefer ‘Merry Christmas.’ ‘Happy Holidays’ is all-inclusive of what is ultimately a month-long season that contains more religious and secular holidays than any other time of the year. ‘Merry Christmas’ is but one of those many celebrations, and the only reason it is so widespread to begin with is because Christmas is the victim of the most commercialization. ‘Happy Holidays’ is an abbreviation that only takes a moment to say. People need to get over that.
Same goes for ‘Holiday tree’ versus ‘Christmas tree.’ Yes, Jewish people don’t open gifts around a ‘Chanukah bush’ or anything, but do these fundamentalists realize that Christmas trees come from an ancient druidic and Norse pagan rite that involved entire villages of ‘heathens’ dancing around a decorated evergreen in order to ward off the cold and summon daylight? ‘Christmas tree’ has come to be the more typical way of referring to the tree tradition, but it means something different to everyone. To a Bible-believer, it may represent Jesus, while to me it represents years of epic gift-receiving and pre-game poking/peeking while Mum was out shopping. If anything, however, a ‘Holiday tree’ is more accurate a label, as the Bible never insists on celebrating Jesus’ birth with a big old tree in the living room. If anything, Christians should be importing sheep and smoking ‘frankincense’ but that only seems to happen on college campuses anymore.
Those who bring up ‘political correctness’ and ‘the reason for the season’ end up ruining the holidays for everyone else, as opposed to reclaiming it. How do these people not figure that out? Are these people the modern-day Scrooges who insist on having December their way or no way? Perhaps so. At least that’s how I see it.
So, too all of you: Happy/Merry Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanzaa, Yule, Festivus, ‘Hi, Neighbor!” Month, Boxing Day, Las Posadas, St. Nicholas Day, and Holidays I Probably Forgot! May your season be filled with awesomely random traditions, and don’t shoot your eye out!
I write this, my friends, laboring under the delusion that someone is still interested in what I have to say after a six-month hiatus.
The Presidential Election is only a year away now (give or take a fortnight), and such a thought brings me back to 2008, which will forever live in my memory as a night of victory and celebration. Yes, I’m flashing back now, bear with me. We’ll get to the angry tirades in a moment…
…my school had an Election Night Party in the Student Union. A big screen broadcasting live from CNN took up a wall, couches and pizza were brought in, and practically everyone was there (my campus;’ student body of 500 could easily fit inside the room). You could paint pictures of the evil looks the Republican and Democratic Clubs were giving each other from opposite corners (disappointingly, no fights broke out that night). And when Obama was declared the projected winner, I was the first one, by a fraction of a second, to absorb it.
And let me tell you, my war whoop of excitement was probably the loudest.
The Democratic Club, as well as the portion of the student body who voted Obama (including myself), went berserk. My friends and I went giddy as schoolgirls and skipped around campus. A new era was dawning. We could feel it hanging in the air above our heads.
Ladies and Gentlemen, that air of hope and change has been blown away and diluted. And, (sing it with me now!) I blame the media.
You know how in those old Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul books, you probably skipped through the chapters on friendship, hope, and charity and went right for the ‘Death and Tough Stuff’ section? Yeah, the media does that too. Only replace the ‘tough stuff’ with ‘negative forces, stupidity, and controversy.’ Our culture likes to react to the negative. It’s just America’s way. I suppose it’s meant to be a reflection on the American Cinderella archetype, in that any good American can live in an absolute shithole but still rise up to become President. Dumb as a hammer? No problem! Minority? Who cares?! Surrounded by controversy when you got caught in that gay club after leaving the NOM rally? Good for you! It’s sort of the media’s roundabout way of portraying the everyday man’s problems for the non-everyday man.
And with that said, I give you The 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate Nominees…
The Other Black Guy, TweedleDee, TweedleDum, Token Woman, Tall Man, and That Other Old White Guy
Each one crazier than the next. I won’t go into detail as to why each one of them scares me shitless as they inch closer to the nomination, but I rather want to focus on what they all have in common:
They all want to be seen as The Guy (or Bachmann) Next Door…who somehow still totes Corporate Politics.
What is the GOP’s fascination with being one of the good ol’ fellas, anyway? Meanwhile, being the very same party that supports the expansion and tax-breaks for Big Businesses and trickle-down economics.
Doesn’t that seem like a bit of a contradiction to you? I mean, if you were the party of the people, wouldn’t you want to bring the Big Man down and support the local businesses, farmers, as well as education in poor neighborhoods? In order to be the legitimate People’s Party….YOU NEED TO BE THE PEOPLE’S PARTY!
Talk about your logical mishaps. More so than their circular explanations against marriage equality, women’s reproductive rights, and cutting taxes for the wealthy 1%, this seems to be the big hole in the GOP’s most recent re-imaging. And yeah, they do get re-imaged a lot. But this ‘Hometown Candidate’ theme is a consistency each time…if you can call a contradictory label that doesn’t apply consistent.
Seriously, look at each candidate’s angle, and tell me there aren’t some strange contradictions abound. We have Michelle Bachmann, who mentions no less than three times in a debate that she’s a mother and foster mother to at least 20 children (madness). She represents the ladies, the everyday struggling mother, and she promises she’ll bring the woman’s and the mother’s touch to the white house. Yet, she is a firm toter of overturning abortion and women’s reproductive choices, as well as birth control.
Hermain Cain is ‘the other black guy’ who accuses Democrats of being racist, while constantly hitting at Obama for being ‘the WRONG black guy’ and using his race as his main selling point as ‘the guy YOU can relate to.’
Then there’s Romney and Perry, who I’m convinced don’t give a shit about whether or not they win the White House as long as they beat the other out for the nomination. I really think their constant bitching at each other makes each of them look decreasingly competent and more like rivals for Homecoming Queen.
I think the less said about Ron Paul, the better.
I think all of this just goes to show that not only does the GOP not know what the hell they’re doing in picking nominees, but that the GOP invests so much in the image of a candidate that they have nothing left to invest in the quality of the person representing their party. If anything, that will lead to the destruction of the party. Not their issues, not their funding. Because the most unassuming shell can open up to reveal a rotting inside.
Someone should tell the Republicans that not everyone likes their next door neighbors.
“As much as I hate to admit it, there is a bias against Christianity in this country. [Soul Surfer] A movie about a girl using faith in Jesus to rebuild her self confidence causes controversy but a movie like ‘Easy A’ which portrays Christians as stupid over zealous pricks gets critical acclaim.” –Anonymous On FB
For the record, I believe the person who wrote this to be decent man, and considering I’ve derived this from how little I know him, that’s a pretty hard thing to say with confidence, but I do.
Soul Surfer, which comes out this week, I believe, is an autobiographical story about that girl several years ago who’s arm became a Lean Cuisine meal for a shark, and her journey through recovery, tested faith, and overcoming all to continue her passion, which is surfing.
The ‘faith,’ as you probably have already deduced, is that delightful little acceptable-excuse-for-everything-in-this-country: Christianity.
Now, let me make my peace quickly with Christianity here and now. I have my little gripes about the faith itself, but that is why I do not believe in it. I can let our differences go and move on with my life. What I loathe is not the church, but the choir and their evangelical Song of Hell that’s directed at everyone but the mirror. It’s those who brainwash kids to spread the word and the fundies who will use violence in the name of Jesus who anger me so much. Oh, and the politicians who use it as an excuse to take away my rights and my friends’ rights. They can go to hell.
Back to my point. Yes, I agree, in many, many cases in American media, Christianity is treated like crap. While I DID like ‘Easy A’ I liked it for it’s satirical nature…not it’s antagonistic usage of conservative people. Christianity, for the most part, does not deserve such portrayals in more serious media, which it still sometimes gets.
However, I must interject on behalf of my neopagan breathren and sister-en (?) and say that Christians shouldn’t bitch about films like ‘Easy A’ or ‘Saved!’ These films, at least, are flaming satires and don’t hide it. There are some cases in pop media where Christianity is given a positive spin. Like Soul Surfer, yes. But also in the multitude of openly Christian singers, country and mainstream pop (annoying as they are *coughcoughDISNEYCHANNELcough*) who are portrayed as honest people who trust in Jesus.
Try slapping the old Wiccan label an on honest musician, and what do you get images of? That ‘honest’ just seems to disappear, doesn’t it?
Pagans get SHIT when it comes to media portrayal nowadays. Or…ever…days. The archetypical teenager goth/emo punk who lives at Hot Topic and is borderline-sociopath is all you’re going to see. Ever. Not only is it not an accurate depiction, but it’s consistent across the board and completely embarrassing.
Just look at The Craft, which came out almost twenty years ago. You have a group of…well…teenage goth chicks who are borderline sociopath as the main characters. And they’re Wiccan. Surprise!
Fun fact, the film’s star, Fairuza Balk, who played the Craziest of Them All is, in fact, Wiccan in real life.
See? At least Christianity gets a good fighting chance not to make a negative name for themselves. We neopagans never had the chance. It started way back in the Roman times when Catholics became the kings and pagans became lion food. Thanks, Pope WhatHisNuts XVI, thanks a shit ton.
I guess, historically, that’s a case of turnabout, as the Roman pagans weren’t so nice to the Christians first (yes,again with the lion food). But didn’t Mr. Jesus preach that whole ‘turn the other cheek’ thing?
The whole idea of evil heathens never changed, I guess, because here we are, 2011, and the only good portrayal of pagans I’ve seen is a girl-power version of Morte D’Arthur that didn’t even get a theatrical release. It’s called Mists of Avalon and it remains to this day among my Top 5 Favorite Films Ever Made.
Unfortunately, Mists isn’t even contemporary in terms of time frame.
At the end of it all, the secret word for the whole thing, is discomfort. Religion is not a very graceful topic to bring up in private or public, let alone in popular media. It’s hard to relate to because if you do have common ground with one religion, you may inadvertently be insulting someone of another faith who happens to be in the same room. Hell, just for being neopagan, every citizen of Utah has a genetically inborn thirst for my blood. The only way one can successfully remove the awkward is to insert humor up it’s butt instead. Then at least the uncomfortable laughter can be masked by genuine laughter.
I don’t see why people need to get so defensive over it all. We Wiccans take these dumbass versions of ourselves with a grain of salt for the most part anyway. Why? Because we know it’s all stupid.
My question now is, why are so many Christians so testy? Compared to Wiccans and other minorities, you really don’t have all that much to complain about. So just sit back for once, and enjoy your new pro-Christian movie.
Oh, and the next time you steal one of our holidays, take the sex out of it, and turn it into an excuse to pig out and then pray for forgiveness for it, might I suggest Litha? Lots of bonfires, lots of dancing, lots of food. Funtimes.
I was rather distressed to learn this afternoon that Hollywood, which is one of only two centers for mass media culture this country has (the other being, of course, New York City) finally has reached, in it’s senility, a state of dementia. True dementia.
What do I mean? I mean, of course, that Hollywood is producing two different movies at the same time…THAT ARE THE EXACT SAME THING.
There are currently TWO major re-vamps of the classic fairy-tale Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in the works. Two separate casts, two separate directors, both boasting the same ‘edgy twist’ and both carrying about as much originality as a musical episode of Grey’s Anatomy.
One, called Snow White and the Huntsman, has Kristen Stewart, who we all know for her exquisite acting ability (for those of you who can’t catch on to the sarcasm there, you can go die now, please) attached to the titular role. No, stupid, as much as I’d be inclined to consider it, I mean, of course the role of the princess as oppose to the role of the huntsman. Directors of this one had been chasing after Stewart for the part for weeks. While I have no doubt they’re directors for a reason, I also have no doubt they AREN’T casting directors for a reason as well. Seriously, I wish I could be offered a Hollywood contract for blinking my eyes and looking like a heroin junkie.
But sadly, my list of infinitive reasons for calling Kristen Stewart the Worst Professional Actress in Cinematic History is worthy of a post of it’s own. Let’s not stray from the topic at hand…
The other, called ‘The Brothers Grimm: Snow White’ has just casts Lily Collins as Snow White, and Julia Roberts has been cast as the Evil Queen since the project was basically conceived. Yeah, same deal. I’m not a Julia Roberts fan aside from Pretty Woman. She dyed her hair red for the part, so I HAD to support her on that one anyway.
The past eight-or-so years, Hollywood has seemed to have this strange obsession with updating/re-vamping classic fairy-tales. Since 2003, we’ve had Cinderella, Snow White (yes, already), Cinderella (again), Hansel and Gretel, Beauty & and the Beast, and most recently, Little Red Riding Hood (shitty, just so you know. Don’t waste ten bucks and wait for the *legal* downloads to flood Pirate Bay). Most of these got the teen melodrama-flick treatment, and those that didn’t got the teen-goth treatment.
All of them sucked. And not just by my standards, but by most. The only movie I sort of approved of was Sydney White, because there’s always been something about that quirky Amanda Bynes that’s charmed me.
Then there’s the sub-genre of fairy tales-gone-awry that thrives on pushy prior-knowledge jokes that makes the skeptics roll their eyes. The only ones of this type that ever worked were Shrek and Shrek 2.
But in all honesty, this has got to stop. Truly, if Hollywood is relying on extremely formulaic re-done-to-death Cinderella stories starring tween stars (yeah, Stewart’s 22, but her fanbase sure ain’t), then frankly, it’s time for Hollywood to lay down and die quietly. Long gone are the days of Casablanca and Citizen Kane.
And if there is a God or Goddess, no one will even CONSIDER touching those.
I also don’t see the appeal of these remakes. We all know the stories. We were fed the spoilers for these movies from our highchairs. How many times must one remake Cinderella before it gets through our thick heads that the shoe fits and the poor waif and the rich prince get married? You can use highly-stylized editing techniques to make the film look impressive, and hell, you can even make clever modern-day conversions for the core details of the fable (i.e. poisoned apple = Apple laptop with a hacker’s virus installed). But at the end of the day, you still have a movie with a shitty, unoriginal concept. Therefore, you still are sub par.
I suppose the point of a movie isn’t necessarily to be given an original story to enjoy. If that were true, books would be obsolete (and yours truly would have committed suicide years ago). At the end of the day, anything goes with the crowd, as long as it’s entertaining and keeping you from cleaning the house for another two hours.
But still, it’s depressing to think that a whole industry has fallen so far as to resorting to the exact same movie being made twice in the same year. What, do they expect people to leave one theater and crave more of Miss White, and be motivated to theater-hop one door over to see the other movie? Is this some sort of conspiracy in an attempt to double-up on the cash intake?
If it is, then it’s stupid as hell.
In all seriousness, this wave of pretentiousness has to end. Hollywood isn’t fooling anyone with this, just like Kristen Stewart isn’t fooling anyone with that oh-so-talented lip-bite she calls ‘method acting.’ At the end of the day, I’d rather spend my $12.50 at Barnes & Noble to get the hardcover version of Grimm’s Fairytales instead. Yeah, I sound like a hipster saying this, but it’s the best bang for my buck and I’m not paying it to look at awful actors turning a classic story into a lame story about werewolf love.
Oy vey, I need to do a review soon. These pop culture-based rants are getting to be the same thing…any ideas?