Battlestar Galovetica

2001 10 16 - 09:11

Who knew? You can learn nifty new phrases from watching re-runs of Battlestar Galactica.

Just for the record, I hate this show. I'm trying to remember what my feelings on it were when it was first aired some twenty years ago, but I guess the part of the subconscious that blocks out traumatic memories was in full working order for me. Okay, it's not so much that I hate it, as that I find it ridiculous. Why was everything in the seventies so big and chunky? Had they not discovered sleek neatness? HMMM? Hair was big, furniture was big, cars were so big (though not quite as big as your average 1950s Cadillac, perhaps. Don't quote me, I don't really know anything about a car that isn't going at least 200 kph around a racetrack in Europe.) that you could have quite the comfortable orgy in daddy's borrowed backseat. (Blame the baby booms on the cars, my friends; it's because of the back seat.)

Today we learned the phrase romantic malnutrition.

One could take that in several different ways, I s'pose; but it really is just what it says it is - someone who is starving from lack of love. Mind you, in the show it was used in reference to some woman who was desperate for a husband - so her level of starvation could only be illusory, or perhaps even comic - remember, there are people who think the highest goal of a human's existence is to get a mate; and they will do or say anything to get one - for the sake of having one. This attitude seems to be falling more by the wayside as decades pass, thankfully; as people realise that there might be other facets to existence other than proving yourself only through the attainment of a partner. The idea that a human being who failed to get a mate was an abject failure always bothered me; but when you think about it, our biological imperative is to procreate. You can't exactly do that without someone of the opposite sex to help you.

It's true, though, that we as humans cannot survive without love, affection, and attention. Well, we can live without them, but it can become somewhat of a dry bones existence. We're social creatures built to be, and have, some kind of companionship. We need it.

We're still trying to figure it all out though; what is healthy, what isn't, what's good, what's not, what's proper, what's wrong... I know any number of people who equate unwavering attention with love; who think devotion is someone pandering to your desires and wants alone, with seemingly no heed for anyone else; themselves included. I don't think we'll ever be able to analyse it to some quantifiable result. I think it's always going to remain a haphazard mystery; and perhaps that's just how it should be, including all the pain and hardship it can sometimes carry with it.

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A live addiction

2001 10 06 - 09:18

Spinning trapeezes with scantily clad women; raised platforms with more of the same; women dancing in feathers and under a giant wedding gown; a sneaking ninja; glow in the dark spinning lights; hippy floral gowns and Davey Crockett hats; a mirrorball suit...

... Jane's Addiction.

It's a stunning visual display; almost too much in some ways. There's always some place for your eyes to be. If it happens that you look at the stage, you might see Perry spinning with the girls on the trapeeze, or you might see Dave Novarro, or you might see a giant wedding gown out from under which people would dance and gyrate.

They switched sides, so to speak; during the show. They appeared - after a small break - on a stage set up at the other end of the arena. They played a slightly more relaxed set from that end; the slower songs. Diane and I termed that the "Lillith Fair" stage, and the main one was the "Lollapalooza Stage". During another song, all of the band members - excepting Perry - came out and played some bongos for us.

The only disappointments from that part of the show were the missing songs. They didn't play Been Caught Stealing or Standing In The Shower Thinking. I'm bothered by the lack of the second; I really like that song.

Live's stage setup was very simple, but very neat in its own way. They had it set up to look like a living room; complete with couches, tables, and lamps. The guitar player sat frequently on the sofa, almost like someone's basement jam session.

And Ed's vocal range is still astounding.

We got there late, so if they did play that depressing piece of crap I hate so much, we were fortunate in being spared hearing it.

All in all, a very fine evening. Once again I am indebted to Diane for letting me tag along.

Ahh, and the rain; did I mention the rain? It's been pissing it down steadily all day. And the Air Canada Centre almost feels like a small place when the lights are down - but when the house lights come on, you can see it's four levels of seating going straight up to the ceiling. It's near freakish.

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Today I...

2001 10 04 - 19:30

Today... today I watched with keen interest, listened with surprise, read with intrigue, laughed heartily, and wept with anguish.

Today... today I flashed with anger, felt nauseous with disgust, felt weighted by envy, weak with angst, and learned a profound truth.

Today... today I spoke with honesty, opened a door, felt elated, remembered the past, feared the future, and helped a friend.

Today... today I was inspired, felt downtrodden, lifted, fell, was ignorant, understood, was pleased, was hurt, felt ugly, and longed for loveliness.

Today... today I did something destructive, did something with potential, birthed a dream, killed a hope, wished for love, gave a hug, ached, soothed, woke, slept, ate, and hungered.

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Spring ahead, fall back

2001 09 24 - 19:31

You know how you can tell autumn's in the air? When you walk outside, it's crisp and cool, and on the breeze you catch the scent of a fireplace.

That has always been one of my favourite smells; and one of my favourite times of year - the first scent of the wood smoke.

Now comes the turning of leaves to the rich colours of orange, red, and ochre; the promise of snows to play in, and the anticipation of warm nights inside hugging a mug of hot chocolate.

I'm not much of a fan girl of extreme weather, truth be told; I much prefer autumn in its pure state, and spring the same way. Winter and summer grow thin on me very quickly. Partly, with winter anyhow, it's the clothing aspect. I really dislike being trussed up in sweaters and scarves; they make me feel constricted and uncomfortable.

First thing I do when I come home, is take off my shoes and socks. Next thing I do is put on a pair of shorts and tshirt; if it's cold enough I put on loose stretchy pants. When I sleep I either wear nothing or a long tshirt; I don't like long-sleeves or nighties down to my ankles. I like to be able to move.

A bizarre bid for personal freedom.

It rained most of the day. The best kind of rain - refreshing and cool with still-warm air. I don't mind getting soaked to the skin in weather like this. In fact, I rather enjoy it. Just cool enough to make you really appreciate a freshly made cup of tea when you finally trundle in the door after being out.

... and, it's almost time to change the clocks.

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Acid House

2001 09 18 - 19:34

Sooo... I'm sitting here watching Acid House, which is subtitled. The funniest thing about it so far, is that they aren't putting all the fucks in the subtitles - though they are speaking them - but they are putting all the cunts in the subtitles.

I wonder from whence comes this particular brand of... favouritism? Oh, and hooray for Canadian television and its relative lack of anal-retentiveness when it comes to censorship. Yay us and our filthy-mouthed programming. Dawg bless the CRTC.

Oh, and this is the first time I've ever been able to read the subtitles of a movie, without my face right up against the screen.

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Night things

2001 09 01 - 12:11

I sat in the darkened room looking out my window; watching the sky in its nightness, with the hazy, indistinct blanket of clouds, with the dark spots where the sky breaks through.

It's peaceful; as a lick of wind comes through the screen and cools the air around me.

There's very little noise... a ring of distant laughter, tires on pavement several streets away... sometimes you can almost pretend there's no one else around; or that - at least - you're the only one awake.

Colours are so unreal at night; so intense. They almost seem not even to exist. You expect everything to be dark and dim... a flash of thick green of a lawn under street lamps; the red brightness of brand new bricks; metallic, sparkling blue of cars painted factory-fresh.

Another delicious lick of wind. It's so <i>magnificently</i> cool. I can hardly wait for the fallen leaves of autumn, for the smells of wood fires, the crispness of clear fall mornings. It's the only time of year I almost wish I lived in the country; perhaps near a forest, so I could walk on pine needles and kick through those piles of fallen leaves. Leaf-scuffing is an honourable activity, you know.

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Evening out

2001 08 31 - 12:17

It's a cool night outside; cool enough to call for jazz clubs, low lights, and cozy corners for two.

I walked past the windows slowly just so I could hear the hum of conversations, and see the vague shapes of people on the other side of a tinted window. The only illumination was the orange of arc sodium and strings of Christmas lights around the club's patio.

How warm it looked; how inviting.

Not far from there's another place of warm conversation and adult couples sharing the sorts of evenings adult couples share. Walls covered in old fashioned wallpaper, curtains dividing the bar from the tables, a piano covered in trinkets and various odds and ends.

The sort of place I'd want to be taken out to; the sort of place you wear a cocktail dress to, dine on gourmet-like meals, and make romance in a place conjuring up the aura of long-ago lounges and supper-clubs.

Tall men, lovely women, fleeting scents of perfume, and always, always just the right soundtrack plays just on the edge of your perception; only loud enough to preserve a sense of privacy in a public place.

Conversation is always good in places like these, and evenings always end perfectly; or so my imagination tells me.

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De-fence

2001 08 29 - 12:24

It seems that any institution of any kind, that bases itself so heavily on the rule book, often ends up killing off the spark of creativity. I've seen it happen to people who've gone to art schools even; they get so stuffed up and stifled with the "accepted rules of performing a task" that it puts too heavy a weight on their individualism, disallows a person from "breathing".

That's an exerpt from an email I wrote to someone earlier today.

Art, or any creative process, cannot exist when blocked in by the walls of classification, rigid thinking, proceedure, protocol, stringent rules, and any methodology that restricts growth or change.

Now, there are some forms of expression which rely - to a great degree at times - on pattern. Music would be one of these. There are ways to put things together to create a flow, a tune, and when you remove the method you get the madness of white noise.

But it is the spirit behind what makes that music, the spirit behind what paints the picture or sows the seed, that must be nurtured and aided; not stifled and buried.

I have a friend who hasn't painted in upwards of six years or more; and part of the reason she hasn't is because of a peculiar artistic block fostered by not being able to get out habits beaten into her brain during four years at art college.

Tragic.

There is an immense spirit there, hemmed in by someone else's ideas of the way things should be.

Sure I went to art school and loved it, but I took the things I learned and used them as tools. I recalled techniques, ways to mix colours, how to prepare canvas, etc.; but I didn't take away The Rules Of How Things Are Supposed To Be Done. I completed ignored the Rules that tell you you're not supposed to put this colour next to that colour because of whatever reason.

Creativity comes from life, from freedom, from the need to let out whatever might be hiding away inside a person; things can't grow if you block out the light. People can't breathe if you cut off their oxygen.

Things need to move, change, and grow; and they can't do that if you fence them in.

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Paraphrased from John Forsythe...

2001 08 25 - 12:36

Was watching an interview clip of John Forsythe discussing the making of the film <i>Lifeboat</i>, in which he tells a nifty little ribald story of our Mr. Hitchcock.

Apparently the one cameraman came rushing onto the set one day and asked Hitch if he'd seen the dailies, to which Hitch replied no. The cameraman says that they've got a very big problem, that they might be in serious trouble. Hitch is naturally curious, so the cameraman mentions all those weird angles things have to be shot at for the film, and says that Tellulah Bankhead doesn't wear underwear; so if those shots get used in the movie everyone will see everything Tellulah's got. Hitch "oh dears" a few times then says:

"Well, I don't know if this is a problem for wardrobe, makeup, or hairdressing."

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Musical / Clyde Gilmore

2001 08 13 - 12:39

 Discovering today, that my grandmother likes Boy George, was almost as surprising as the time I found out she likes one or two Sex Pistols songs. (That was approximately fifteen years ago, and I'm still surprised by it. Actually, I think I'm still trying to get over it. Next thing you know, she'll be telling me she thinks Al Jorgensen is "keen", or something.)

My grandfather never struck me as one for too much music, unless it was Stompin' Tom Connors, or came from Cape Breton, even though the radio was always set to the local top 40 station. (COCK - We're comin' at ya! Local joke, don't ask. :&gt;) Yet every Sunday afternoon he'd have Clyde Gilmore on the CBC. Clyde Gilmore had possibly the most astounding collection of music ever assembled by any man ever. He seemed to have everything, from the popular to the rare and obscure. I'm sure, if you wanted to be material about it, what he had could have amounted to a worth of six digits.

It was Clyde Gilmore who first introduced me to Billie Holiday whom I still adore. (Oh, and to the supposed lover of jazz I spoke to a few years ago; Billie Holiday is not a 'he'. Thank you. That is all.)

I can still hear his voice, too; I could pick it out in a crowed of thousands if he were actually alive to be in that crowd of thousands. He's missed by me. he was a reminder of good things from childhood, and one of the few things I can associate with nothing bad. Not directly.

He's also, I'm certain, indirectly responsible for my love of the Ode To Joy; considering it was through him that I had my first taste of classical music.

...and speaking also of my grandfather, I've recently rediscovered my love of Bugle chips. He used to bring a bag from the bar when he'd come home. I loved them. It seems, though, that I have bought the local variety store out of house and Bugle chips. Their supply is dry. Either I shop elsewhere, or go without. Decisions, decisions.

Oh yes, I almost forgot the decent film I did see today. The Lion In Winter starring Katherine Hepburn and Peter O'Toole. Oh how I love Peter O'Toole. I think I've seen it once before, though many moons ago. I used to live for films like this. They're the reason I spent so many late nights in front of the television back when the local tv stations would actually show something that wasn't a bloody infomercial. No wonder things are such a frigging cultural wasteland nowadays. Now, though, I've got access to a couple of movie stations, so I'm watching Prelude To A Kiss. It's turning out to be not too damn bad. The pacing is a tad on the slow side, but sometimes that suits a film just fine.

I was just glancing at something in someone else's journal, something he's writing about going on a journey. Travel is a very important thing, in so many ways. In order to understand your own culture, your own home, and the cultures and homes of others, you have to go outside of the safe world you've always known. You must go abroad and experience life the way someone else experiences it. I think it's a good education to get outside of yourself once in a while. It's certainly good for diffusing social prejudice, for those open of mind enough to discern things around them, to perceive things, rather than just react to what's around them. You must interract.

In order to form a more perfect union, so to speak, you have to meld with what's around you, observe it, feel it, let it become a part of you. it's a different place, and a different world. It's not going to be like home, and you should not expect it to be so. But that's the whole point; living outside of what you're used to; living in another place so that you can learn from it.

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