28 June 2006

It's Sabotage

But unlike the 70s era cops in the Beastie Boys video, I'm sabotaging myself. It is probably readily apparent to those of you who know me that I've been unhappy for quite a while now. Those of you who read this blog know I'm dissatisfied with my job etc. But that isn't the whole of it. I feel completely stagnant in all areas of life and recently I realized I haven't made a new friend in years. Years people. That is not good. I've been thinking about that a lot in the past few days, about why I'm so loathe to exert myself to make new friends.

Part of the reason is that I'm shy and a born observer. I don't say things unless I think it is important. But I remember enjoying social activities and looking forward to them in a way I can't these days. Cocktail party sort of situations are my own personal version of hell, because I feel I have nothing to say. I don't really know how I went from being the preschooler who told a man at my mother's salon that his smoking of cigars would turn his lungs black and he would die or told the woman at our apartment's pool that she shouldn't wear bikinis because God wanted her to be modest. As I was thinking about how different that child is from the adult who doesn't think she has anything of interest to say to anyone a long-forgotten memory popped up.

In 9th grade my biology teacher arranged a field trip to a local university to see its science department. The trip included a visit to the planetarium right before lunch. Because our teacher treated us like 5 year-olds she arranged us into boy/girl pairs we had to eat with, and because of a coincidental packing of lunches rather than buying lunch at the campus cafeteria, my friend and I were assigned to eat with two of the most popular boys in the class. We were tangentially friends, so it wasn't as socially awkward as it might have been. However, we were talking about the planetarium and constellations when I mentioned that as a little girl, I knew my birthday was coming when Orion arrived on the horizon. One of the boys, I don't remember whom, surely thinking himself clever, flippantly asked why I didn't just look at a calendar. I think I gave a half-hearted smile while the boys laughed, but I do remember completely shutting down for the rest of the meal.

With that memory all the mortification of Jr. High rejection and the sinking feeling of smiling when you want to cry came flooding back. I don't blame those boys. It was Jr. High everyone had their own issues and insecurities to deal with and this isn't the defining moment of my life. I had lots of intervening years in which I participated and enjoyed social activities. Additionally, I alone decide how to live my life. My decision now has to be whether I'll let something that happened 12 years ago dictate who I am today.

13 June 2006

The Supe

Everytime I see a promo or a magazine cover or hear an ad for Superman Returns, I get a little melancholy. I just feel so conflicted about this new movie. It seems so wrong that the franchise should be resurrected when Christopher Reeve is no longer with us. It seems rather galling that there should be a new incarnation of the Man of Steel.

Maybe I'm upset because, having been born the year the first movie was release, Christopher Reeve is the only Superman I know. I was never a comic book reader, so my frame of Superman reference is basically the four movies. And regardless what one thinks of their individual quality, they represent my understanding of Superman mythology.

Oddly, I never had an issue with the television program Smallville, possibly because it dealt with something outside the realm of the movies or because when I watched it, I was more disturbed by my growing attraction to the anti-hero, Lex Luthor. Also, I found it comforting when Christopher Reeve guest-starred in a couple of episodes. It didn't seem so much as the passing of the torch, but rather the acknowledgement of a partnership.

The discomfort I have felt since I heard about the new movie only increased when I caught the cast presenting an award on the MTV Movie Awards and then commenting on a documentary about Superman on A&E. Brandon Routh - the new Superman - not only, despite brown eyes, reminds one of Christopher Reeve, but his voice sounds similar as well. It was a little creepy to hear a voice naturally echoing the timbre and cadence of a childhood hero.

I still haven't decided if I'm actually going to see the movie when it hits theaters. On the one hand it seems overly eerie, on the other like I'm making a mountain out of a molehill. It is, after all, only a movie and Superman is only a comic book character.

The irony of all this emotional turmoil is that Superman has never been my favorite superhero. I always preferred Batman, the self-made Caped Crusader dwelling in shades of gray, to the black & white certainty of the Man of Steel.

12 June 2006

Come ON!

This might surprise a few of you, dear readers, but I'm obsessed with the World Cup. Maybe because it is the Olympics of the soccer (I have to really fight my pretentious instinct to refer to it as 'football') or perhaps because it is the one sport I can still stand to watch on television. Either way, this obsession started in 1994 when the US hosted its first World Cup. I even bought a t-shirt with my hard-earned baby-sitting money. I tangentially followed the 1998 World Cup, but without the internet, it was a little difficult. In 2002 I contributed to a pool started by my fellow interns at the BYU Barlow Centre to rent a tv and stayed up until all hours watching the England/Germany match. And so we come to the 2006 World Cup which started Friday.

I suprised my roommate Parker with my dedication to the event. I think my watching the England/Paraguay game on a Spanish-language station may have worried her. But I loved every minute of it. And so we come to today. The US choked. Hopefully they can get it together for their next match against Italy. They are better than they played today and I hope they show it in the upcoming days. But I have to confess, if it came down to a US/England match I would be hard-pressed to choose a side.

09 June 2006

For You Music Aficionados

Or those who are just really sick of radio. I'm sure I'm the last person to know about this, seeing as I am not on the cutting edge of technology, but I heard about this site called Pandora. It is easy to use and has far fewer commercials than Yahoo LAUNCHcast. Enjoy!

05 June 2006

Random Musings

I can't really make any of the following things into a coherent entry, so I'll just bullet them and let you comment.

  • I am beginning to really, really hate Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. Not because of them personally, but because I cannot stand one more morning waking up to some DJ telling me some inane detail from a "source close to" them about their life. I so do not understand the obsession people have with the private doings of individuals with whom they are so wholly unconnected. Corollary: I am also fed up with Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes, Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn, and the unholy cultural phenomenon of stupid mashed nicknames assigned to all of the above.
  • I'm sorry, but if the several protests about immigration could be held at Library Square without disrupting traffic and closing roads for an entire Sunday, the gay pride people can do it too. And don't flip me off Man in the Crosswalk when I have to make a turn before you get all the way to the other side of the street because the light is yellow, there are 47 cars behind me and there was no advance warning about the closed roads.
  • It should not be 97 degrees on the first Tuesday in June. 87 I could handle. But if it is reaching almost 100 in the first of June, one long, hot, miserable summer of smelling of sunscreen and hat hair is before me. Not. A. Fan.
  • Shut up, Fox News. Specifically, but not limited to, John Gibson and Bill O'Reilly.
  • Is it fangirly of me that I really want to buy Anderson Cooper's book Dispatches from the Edge despite having no money with which to do so?
  • How sad is it that in my late 20's I'm fighting a losing battle against a sophomoric crush on a guy from church? Especially one who doesn't know my name and is at most only 2 inches taller than I, therefore incompatible with every pair of shoes in my closet, except the flip flops.
  • Jane Austen novels are like crack. They get you all high on 'romance' and 'love' etc. and then you crash, hard, into reality, ie: see above.

Any thoughts? Or do I just need to stop wasting time and get back to the ugly, ugly world of past due invoices?