30 April 2008

I Haven't Run Away to Australia, I Promise

Well, dear readers, it has been a while. I have been running around like a crazy person for the last few weeks. There have been two weekend trips to the Pudget Sound, a bunch of Young Women’s stuff, work, visiting teaching, errands, staying with my friend with Down Syndrome so her parents could be with another daughter when she went through the temple, etc. and I’m so exhausted I have been turning my alarm off in my sleep even though I go to bed at 9:30 at night, like I'm some sort of Florida-dwelling retiree. Last weekend I slept 13 hours in one 24-hour period. Mostly because I was a big ball of stress most of the week before.

See, Saturday I had an interview with the Western Washington University’s Masters in Teaching program. I drove up to Bellingham last Friday and some family friends took me on a tour. I can totally see myself living there. The historic Fairhaven area has a 3-story used bookshop just one block from a gelato shop. I know! And in between them is the Village Green where they screen movies in the summer. Check out pictures here and here, as I am an idiot and forgot to grab my camera out of my suitcase and put it in my purse. And I forgot my phone has a camera in it. Yes, I’m Queen of the Idiots. Saturday consisted of a group assessment and an individual interview. I think it went quite well. Anyway, keep your fingers crossed for the next couple of weeks. They said we should hear yea or nay around the second week of May. I’m trying to reign in my obsessing, but it is going to be a long wait for that letter. Also when I live there, you all have to come visit, as it is an awesome place to explore.

In other news, all my favorite TV shows are back on, but The Office is starting to make me very uncomfortable. I don’t know if I signed up to deal with a coke habit. Or with Andy and Angela being more popular than Jim and Pam. It’s like Bizarro World Office.

In other entertainment news, I'm reading The Ghost Map by Steven Johnson for book club.  It is about the 1854 cholera epidemic in London which led to the discovery that cholera was a bacteria and changed the face of urban living.  It is really good and extraordinarily engrossing. The downside: everytime my stomach grumbles or even feels in any way unusual, the irrational part of my brain screams 'ACK! I got the CHOLERA!'

And one final word of advice. Your brain cells might suffer if you are forced to watch Beauty & the Beast, The Jungle Book, Aladdin, and The Lion King in a row. I'm just saying.

24 April 2008

Karmic Payback

So last night, Parker and I were discussing how we might possibly have matured as we really have little interest in the lives of our favorite FBLers other than what they are doing professionally.  It could also possibly be that it is kind of exhausting keeping up with other people's lives and we just don't have the energy to do it anymore.  Either way, I was feeling rather smug and adult about the whole thing.  

Today, I had to go to my mobile phone provider to get a headset for my phone, as I will be driving up to Bellingham this weekend for an grad school interview at WWU.  As I'm going by myself I thought it might be nice to have a hands-free way to reach out and chat with friends and family.  I'm too cheap to get Bluetooth, so the salesman had to go digging to find one.  He wanted to make sure they were compatible, so I blithely handed over my phone to him.  It was only when he opened my phone and nearly laughed that I remembered that this was my wallpaper:

And any and all pretensions to maturity and not being a squee-ing, 12 year-old fangirl went right out the window.

13 April 2008

Andrew Davies Can Bite Me

There are no words for the level of HATE I feel towards his new adaptation of A Room with a View.  In fact, I am so blinded with rage that I can't verbalize anything.  A Room with a View is one of my top 5 favorite novels and he desecrated it.  I realize I should just let it go, but I can't. I'm sure I'm overreacting, but when one of the best lines from the novel, one that signifies the whole theme of the novel, is left out of the adaptation for no apparent reason, how can it be a true adaptation?
"Leave them alone," Mr. Emerson begged the chaplain, of whom he stood in no awe. "Do we find happiness so often that we should turn it off the box when it happens to sit there? To be driven by lovers-- A king might envy us, and if we part them it's more like sacrilege than anything I know."
Now I have to go buy the 1985 adaptation with Helena Bonham-Carter, Dames Maggie Smith and Judi Dench, Daniel Day-Lewis, and Julian Sands to scrub this atrocity out of my head. Especially the part about George dying in WWI.


I had a lot of things I wanted to write about last week, like the movie Leatherheads (Go see it! I would have liked it even without the one-two punch of George Clooney and John Krasinski, although they made it even more enjoyable.) and how I found the new episode of The Office a little disconcerting and a bit depressing (although not as depressing as the last one before the WGA strike) or the fact that even though a lot of good things are happening in the lives of my friends and family, that I really, really don't like change.  But then I decided to start waking up at 5:15 in the morning to work out the same week I decided to give up my once-a-day Coke&Lime and/or Dr. Pepper habit.  So I spent whatever time I wasn't at work curled up in a pitiful ball on my bed wishing for sweet oblivion of sleep.  I spent most of my time at work wishing for the same thing, except that I was forced to sit upright at my desk.

My reasons for getting up before the sun and giving up the sweet nectar of caffeinated carbonation are based in the desire to be healthier and skinnier.  I wasn't making the time to workout in the evenings, so I had to do it when no one would plan anything to interrupt.  Which meant when all sane people are still asleep.  And we all know soda makes one fat and rots one's teeth.  The final tipping point in favor of the pre-dawn workout was a new hairstyle that I can take from sopping wet to (as my visiting teacher put it) 'foxy' in ten minutes.  See:

I don't know if 'foxy' is the word I would use, but a woman I see at the courthouse all the time told me that she never wanted to see me in long hair again.  I think she might be right. 

Would you concur?

07 April 2008

It's A Girl!

Mime and Mrs. Mime found out they are having a girl today. Which means I've got one of each to spoil. She even has a name already, which means I have something to call her. Although, due to my strict rule of blog semi-anonymity, she will still be referred to as 'Gummi Bear' which is what her mother christened her after her first ultrasound. It works for me.

Sense & Sensibility: The Wrap-up

I liked this adaptation, I really did.  It was, in a sense, truer to the book as it incorporated more characters and situations from the actual book. All the actors acquited themselves well and even poor Willoughby (Dominic Cooper) couldn't help the fact that I don't find him dashing enough to sweep anyone off their feet. And they developed the pre-Willoughby Marianne/Brandon relationship much better in this new adaptation, so the eventual pairing didn't seem quite so out of the blue.  But I must be honest.  My heart belongs to the Emma Thompson/Ang Lee version.  It may leave a lot out, but I think it captures the heart of the story so very well.  A lot of the credit should go to the amazing cast of the 1995 version.  Even the bit parts, like the Palmers and poor, dead Mr. Dashwood, are household names (at least for the Sumptious Literaray Adaptation* lover).  Lest any of you have forgotten, here are some members of the cast:

Emma Thompson              
Kate Winslet                     
Alan Rickman                   
Tom Wilkinson               
Imelda Staunton 
Hugh Laurie 
Imogen Stubbs 
Hugh Grant

I know, right?  When the (possibly) weak link in the show is Hugh Grant, and I can't even really say he is the weak link, as Edward is written to be somewhat incapable of making good first (and even second) impressions and this was the film that got me on the path from loathing Hugh Grant to enjoying his work.  (About A Boy was the film that really made me pay better attention.  However, he still acts like a 20 year-old frat boy, which keeps him from any sort of permanent FBL status).  This Edward was just one iota too socially adept for me.  Marianne's inability to comprehend why anyone would like him is one of those 'told not shown' things. I absolutely adore Imogen Stubbs's incarnation of Lucy Steele.  She telegraphed exactly why Edward Ferrars would have engaged himself to her at 19 years of age and exactly why he could hardly bear it four years later.  She was the perfect villian, whereas the new Lucy Steele seemed out of her depth.  I couldn't quite believe her capable of ensnaring Robert Ferrars, as stupid as he was.  And no one can compete with Greg Wise, so why even try, really.  Same with Emma Thompson (who inhabits the role so well, you kind of forget she is about 15 years too old to be Elinor) and Kate Winslet (whose skin is so unnaturally white during the film, you can totally believe she would get sick after a hike in the rain).  But I did like this one, and unlike most of the other new adaptations from the Austen-a-thon, I will probably add it to my collection.  I'm sad to bid the Austen-a-thon farewell.  And I'm not at all sure how I feel about the new adaptation of A Room with a View.  How can anyone improve on the previous one?  It had Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Helena Bonham-Carter, Daniel Day-Lewis and Julian Sands (am I forgetting anyone?)!  But whatever I end up thinking about it, I'll be sure to share it with you all.

04 April 2008

Isn't He Adorable?

Presenting Axel Noah Hinson Henry Cooper Jack Huckleberry*

I'm completely enamored of him already.

*all actual and, presently, rejected name possibilities for this little boy. His real name is a closely guarded secret.

03 April 2008

In Case The Grad School Thing Doesn't Work Out

I could always try my hand at making cookie bouquets.  Check out my first attempt, courtesy of a Young Women's activity last night:

02 April 2008

One More For Me To Spoil!

I like to spoil the children of my friends.  I feel this is my right as the honorary aunt.  That and whispering sweet liberal nothings in their ears while they sleep.  But I digress.  I have a new little one to spoil, one who is actually related to me (who, despite being my cousin, I will probably always refer to as my nephew because of the 29 and 1/2 year age difference). Yesterday my aunt The Accidental Housewife and her husband Mr. Big had their son!  The 8 lb 9 oz bundle of joy arrived a little before 3pm yesterday and has a bit of brown hair and eyes that will probably turn brown.  I have already bugged Mr. Big about getting some pictures, so if they say it is ok, I will post them here for my friends to coo over.  The Accidental Housewife and Mr. Big are still in name negotiations (actual suggestions by Mr. Big: Axel and Huckleberry), so we will just have to continue to refer to the little one as Junior.  Maybe I should humour Mr. Big and refer to his son as Axel on my blog.  Maybe that would soften the blow.