Wednesday, September 24, 2003

Am I one of those high-maintenance girls who thinks she's low maintenance? Please comment. Just wondering. Also, I enter data into a computer all day long, and I have a paper cut from a file folder on each pinky. Not fun.

Friday, September 12, 2003

This Friday is the exact opposite of last Friday. Everything is wrong...

Thursday, September 11, 2003

I remember it vividly. I was driving to work. Click Camera & Video in Beavercreek. I went the back way to avoid mall traffic. I was scanning through the radio stations, but there was no music. It was all talk. I figured something must have happened, so I stopped scanning. And listened. By that time both planes had hit. I started to cry. I remember feeling violated. Like, "How could this happen on our land." Leslie's mom called her off work because we were two minutes from Wright Pat Air Force Base, and she was afraid it would be targeted. So I had to stay an extra three hours to cover her shift. The base suggested everyone go home. Every place around us closed. The mall closed. But Click stayed open. Eight people came in that day. No one made eye contact. Only three spoke. We had the tvs in the store tuned to the new stations. I saw the towers fall. I didn't cry at work. Then I remembered Suzanne was in New York. I called her mom, but couldn't get through for an hour. Sharon was able to get a hold of her daughter. She was fine. She had stopped in to get a cup of coffee before ballet class, and heard the plane fly overhead. She said they still had class, but it was weird. The Pentagon was hit. So many people. Then Channel 7 reported that a plane had crashed downtown. The tallest building there was the Kettering Tower--where my dad worked. I freaked out. I called him--no answer. I called my mom. She hadn't heard anything. A few minutes later she called back. He was on his way home. They evacuated the building and most of the city. All commercial planes were grounded. And Channel 7 was wrong. By complete coincidence a transformer had blown, causing an explosion and brush fire just outside of downtown. There was a a huge sound that rattled the store windows. We all screamed. It took a second to figure out we had just heard a sonic boom. WPAFB was clearing the sky so Air Force One could fly over. I went home that night tired and scared. I got on the internet because I felt like I needed to be connected to people. Even though they were faceless. I read bluishorange. People had made a ton of comments. It was like a communtity. Everyone was looking for solace. And two years have passed and there was a war.

Where were you when it happened?

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

Yea! Comments are back. So, make some.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

I am so in love right now I could puke my guts out.

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

The people who host the comments section are having server problems. It should be up by this weekend or the beginning of next week. Just to let you know. So you can stop worrying and biting your nails. ;)

I don't know what's up with my comments. I'll look in to that and hopefully have them up again soon.

Heather, this one's mainly for you...I signed up for this new service on www.netflix.com. Go there. Rent dvds. See, what you do is pay $20/month and they mail you dvds. It takes a day or so for them to get to you, and it also comes with return postage. So all you do is watch them and put them back in the mailer to get more. You can have three at a time. If you watch one, you can send it back right away, and they'll just send you the next movie on your list. My first rentals: Daredevil, Star Wars 2, and (drumroll) The Asylum of Satan!!! I couldn't believe they had it! It's a really bad "horror" (I use the term lightly) movie made in the 70s. A great movie to MysteryScience while you watch. Complete with plastic bugs on strings and a monster whose fake teeth fall out. I highly recommend it for a party or something. But you don't have to be drunk to enjoy it. Same with Showgirls. Anyway, I'm pumped. Also in the mail today came my IHOP certificates. Paul and I went there twice in June, and both times we were double charged. The dates were more than a week apart, we just happend to be there when their computers went nuts. So they sent me two $15 gift certificates (on top of refunding my money) for my inconvenience. Today was a good mail day.

Every once in a while for no reason, zha will write an essay. Just randomly. This one I got a few days ago, and wanted to share it. (Yes, I got permission) He's one of my favorite writers, and this is why:

Favorite movies by inhaesio zha

Included below is a list of my top 10 favorite movies. This
list represents a compromise between my "I think these
movies are the best made" list and my "These movies agree
with my preferences the best" list...so, while I think Kundun
is the best paced/edited movie ever, it's not on my list
because a story about the Dali L[l]ama doesn't really move
me, and True Romance isn't on my list because, even though
the story and writing strikes my fancy very pleasantly, there
are aspects of the acting and moviemaking that aren't so

Here are my top 10 favorite movies:

1. The Insider
2. Pulp Fiction
3. Natural Born Killers (the director's cut)
4. Apocalypse Now (the director's cut)
5. Leaving Las Vegas
6. Silence of the Lambs
7. Casino
8. Hamlet 2000
9. Requiem for a Dream
10. Lolita (the Jeremy Irons/Dominique Swain version)

You may notice the conspicuous absense of Dark City and
Gattaca, two of my favorite movies, from this list. Blade
Runner is also missing. While I think these movies,
especially Blade Runner and Dark City, are truly excellent
movies, I find that, from my particular chair in the
universe, almost all science fiction is less impactful than
more "realistic" types of fiction; hence, there are no sci-fi
movies on my top ten list, and only two movies that are
highly stylized visually in a way that makes them less
classically, literally realistic (Natural Born Killers and
Requiem for a Dream). Other movies that I like, but that
don't make this list are Heat, Taxi Driver, Moulin Rouge,
Magnolia, Pi, A Clockwork Orange, The Usual Suspects, The
Royal Tenenbaums, Se7en, U Turn, The Piano, Dangerous
Liasons, Das Boot, The Red Violin, Fight Club, and Jesus of
Montreal. Heat doesn't make the list because, while it's an
excellent example of a well-paced long (3.5 hour) movie, and
it has great semi-realistic cops and robbers stuff, it lacks
a universal human appeal, which I think characterizes all the
movies in my list. Taxi Driver, while certainly a solid 4-
star movie, lacks the supreme ease of flow that Scorcese
demonstrates in Kundun and Casino. Moulin Rouge, while
breakthrough in its stylism, and a palatable love story (high
compliment from me), is weak in some of the musical numbers
in the third quarter of its progression. Etcetera. Keep in
mind that I put this together in one night, so it's
quite possible I haven't even thought of a few movies that
would be in my top 10.

The movies I've chosen are contemporary American movies. I
live in contemporary America...I'm not suited to liking
French character dramas. Notice that two of the top 10 (#2
and #3) were written by Quentin Tarantino. Also, two of my
top 10 (#1 and #7) are adapted from true stories. Notice
that there are no comedies on my top 10 list. Notice that in
9 of the 10 (excluding #1), someone gets killed, and in 8 of
the 10 a main character gets killed. Here are some brief
notes on why I like each of these movies:

1. The Insider
- no one dies, no one has sex, the dramatic climax is
embodied in an act that happens a hundred times in an
hour of sitting with someone, that people hardly ever
think about
- based on a true story, a story with extreme social
relevance, and a story that most people don't think is
very dramatic
- Al Pacino, Russel Crowe, and Diane Venora: awesome
- The Insider and American Beauty were nominated for Best
Picture in the same year. American Beauty won: the
Academy is smoking crack. That was the last year I
paid any attention to who won Best Picture, because
when American Beauty won over The Insider, the award
became meaningless to me.

2. Pulp Fiction
- This is the best screenplay ever written. It is the
best example of writing in the screenplay genre.
- This is the most relevant, most reflective movie made
about 1990s thought culture. If aliens came to me and
said, "We want to learn as much as we can in two
hours about American thought culture in the 1990s.", I
would tell them to watch Pulp Fiction.

3. Natural Born Killers (the director's cut)
- If the aliens had four hours, I would have tell them
to watch Pulp Fiction and Natural Born Killers.
- Juliette Lewis is brilliant. This is her best role.

4. Apocalypse Now (the director's cut)
- my favorite war movie
- The humor, like that in Natural Born Killers, makes
this movie superior to war tellings that aim to be
more strictly, classically realistic. You can keep
a straight face and hit me and it will hurt, but if
you punch me while you're laughing it will hurt more.

5. Leaving Las Vegas
- my favorite love story movie
- one of the best movies ever made that is more or less
about real people (even though they're fictional)
- Nicolas Cage's best role

6. Silence of the Lambs
- my favorite scary movie
- the best psycho villain ever created
- perfect plot symmetry, subtle irony: In a context of
normative, correctional activities (the FBI),
the "heroes", in order to catch a criminal (and save
the day) are forced to release a criminal of greater
magnitude. This is probably the best pop-culture
embodiment of the irony and absurdity that is intrinsic
to the whole idea of legal justice.

7. Casino
- Sharon Stone's best role
- gangster shit
- awesome pacing, interweaving, sequencing of stories:
This is one of the first short-seeming long movies.
Without this movie, I don't think there would have been
Magnolia-, Heat-, or The Insider-type movies: long
movies whose slightly nonlinear progression makes them
go by smoothly. Short Cuts pre-dates all these, but
is a poorer example of this type of pacing.

8. Hamlet 2000
- I just like Hamlet and the scenery in this telling
allows the contemporary mind to relax into the story,
while masterfully presenting the text.
- Hamlet playing with recorded video: good
- Ophelia in the Guggenheim: scary good

9. Requiem for a Dream
- Like Pi, stylistically next. Darren Aronofsky is
inventing the style that television, movies, and new
media will employ in 15-20 years.

10. Lolita (the Jeremy Irons/Dominique Swain version)
- Such a complete portrait of desolation, of tragic
characters, appeals to me.
- The photography doesn't fail to fetishize the violence
that is being exchanged between the four main
characters. In the scene where Irons grabs Swain by
the wrist, the shots are almost completely a bay of
white with red accents. There are other examples in
the film.