Looks around, kicks off the dust of the ol' livejournal.
So, yeah, it's been a long time since I've even logged into livejournal...I've got lots of fanfic and personal travails to catch up on.
I thought I'd restart the LJ with two topics that have warranted some discussion on this blog in the past: criticism of Grey's Anatomy and my submissions to the Afterellen Hot 100 list. Pick your poison:
- Yesterday was the 42nd anniversary of the death of Robert F. Kennedy so I spent part of the day memorializing him on twitter. It's amazing how little is known about him among young progressives, despite the fact that his political legacy permeates today's progressive politics. Of course, I'm a little biased..I, quite literally, have his poster on my wall. [ rfk center ]
- Finally got a chance to watch "The Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister" on Saturday. For whatever reason, I've been putting off reading the diaries for some time now, so I watched the movie partially blind to the details of the story. I liked it a lot.
I'll have to watch it again to figure out whether I'd prefer it to "Fingersmith" or "Tipping the Velvet," but it certainly ranks highly alongside them. [ link ]
- Woke up early on Saturday and caught the final tune-up for the US men's soccer team prior to the World Cup. The match served a dual purpose for me--an opportunity to cheer on Team USA and a chance for me to scout the opposition for Germany in the opening round. My astute analysis? The US defense looks shaky and the Canadian offense can't convert in pressure situations. We'll see how things go when the games start on Friday. [ fifa ]
- The Swell Season show that I mentioned in my last post has re-ignited my interest in seeing more live music. I realize that I shouldn't project too much on other artists---after all, I've wanted to see Glen and Marketa live for years--but that tingling feeling that you're left with after a show...even if it only lasts a few days, it's something I need in my life right now.
Between a friend's offer of free concert tickets and the plethora of local shows, I should have plenty of sources of entertainment this summer. [ pollstar ]
This might be my new format for posts. Gives me the opportunity to opine without going too in depth about anything.
- I argue for the ability of the press to access Dover and, now, areas impacted by the oil spill, out of principle. Then I see photos like Charlie Riedel's of seabirds caught in the oil slick on East Grand Terre Island and I almost wish I hadn't. Heartbreaking. [ photos ]
- The Clinton Library released records of SCOTUS nominee Elena Kagan's time on the Domestic Policy Council today. Amazing how a lifetime #SCOTUS appointment pales in comparison to what could be lifetimes of disappointment in the Gulf. [ TPM ]
- Still basking in the glow of The Swell Season show from a few weeks ago. Amazing, amazing show. Tempted to go see them at another stop on their summer tour. [ video ]
- One of my other favorite bearded singer/songwriters, William Fitzsimmons, is hitting the road stateside this summer. I'm still ambivalent about his recent experimentation with other genres but watching "Finding Home" endears him to me all over again. [ video ]
- Why am I just finding this out now? Jessica Szohr and Ed Westwick broke up?! I'm heartbroken. [ Or not. Jessica, call me. ]
- The new iPhone is supposed to be unveiled on Monday. I guess that means I probably shouldn't buy the 3GS for $97...unless I want to relive the iPhoto incident. [ link ]
- SEVEN DAYS! I'm going to become pretty insufferable in a week. I tried to warn you. [ ESPN ]
You'd think, after the devastation that we've witnessed in Haiti in the days since the earthquake, I'd recognize that there are things more important than elections, but the loss in Massachusetts still stings. I've got lots to say about it but I'll spare you the laundry list. Sufficed to say, Martha Coakley was a terrible candidate but she deserved better than she got from some progressive circles.
2. Twitter is awesome.
My day was salvaged, in part, because of two things that happened on twitter: first, I won another contest. I've won two twitter contests before--one from Political Wire, the other from The Grammys--but today's win is, by far, the best. I won a copy of Congressional Quarterly's Politics in America.
That sound you hear is me squealing like a teenage girl at a Jonas Brothers concert. So exciting.
For those who aren't politically obsessed, just know that PIA is the single best reference book for a political commentator/writer available today. I've never gotten a new one because they're so expensive--the paperback version retails for $85--so getting my hands on one for free feels like Christmas.
The second twitter highlight of the day was exchanging DMs with my twitter crush. Nothing elicit, mind you...actually, it was a disagreement about her reporting...but I'm hearted by the fact that she's interested enough to engage with me. I feel like I'm one step closer to crossing #7 off this list.
"Life Unexpected" is a really good show. I watched it on a whim after being horribly disappointed in Ellie Nash'sStacey Farber's new show, "18 to Life," and was shocked by how good it was. I'm looking forward to seeing more.
I felt like I should post something, so here goes....
Top 5 Movies of 2009: 1. The Hurt Locker 2. Sugar 3. Precious 4. Up in the Air 5. Up
Top 5 Things I Did (or Didn't Do) That I Regret in 2009: 1. Letting some important friendships wane. 2. Allowing my family to take advantage of me (repeatedly). 3. Not getting help for my insomnia. 4. Not working hard enough on my commitment issues. 5. Not finish the fanfic that I've been talking about forever.
I saw Precious on Saturday. The movie opened near me last week but I resisted going so as not to be caught among the swarms of people going to see New Moon. There's still a lot of the movie that I have to process, but just a few quick thoughts (I'll try to stay spoiler free):
1. In an otherwise jovial interview that Gabourey Sidibe (Precious) did with Ellen last month, she talks about how she got into character for the film (her first). She said:
I realized I knew this girl. She's not some...she's not made up by Hollywood, she's not a character that can be drawn together. She's a real person and I knew her in my family and I knew her in my friends and I knew her in people I didn't want to know. And, so, she was so close to me, somehow.
I have never known someone who, in solitary, shares Claireece "Precious" Jones' experience (thank God), but as I watched I, much like Sidibe, began to see Precious as an amalgamation of so many people I know. That's the moment the movie really hits you--when you allow yourself to see the movie not as some fictional depiction but as this fusion of the lives of real people.
2. In a tradition that started with Brokeback Mountain, I've taken to seeing emotionally charged movies by myself. I don't like getting emotional in front of anyone but, funerals notwithstanding, the idea of getting emotional of people I know is just...I get exasperated just contemplating the notion.
There's something comforting about seeing a movie like Precious in a room full of strangers. You have this amazing freedom to just react...to laugh, to cry, to anger--and I did a lot of all three in this movie--with no concern for how the person next to you interprets your reaction. You get to view the movie through your own lens and I adore that. I can't imagine having seen Precious in any other way.
3. It's been a frustrating few days since I saw Precious. I've been consumed with processing the movie, particularly the issues of race which are passively acknowledged in the film (the movie is much more about poverty than race). I struggle most of all with the movie's colorism--in how it manifests itself in Precious the character and in Precious the movie--and how to reconcile its existence with the absence of other phobias. I'm not sure I'll figure this out until I read the book and/or start to deconstruct the movie (out loud) with more people who've seen it.
4. Whatever my other misgivings about the movie, I can't deny how brilliant the acting was. Gabourey Sidibe was an inspired choice to play Precious and Mo'Nique was just amazing.
Danielle had this meme on her LJ today and it looked like a pretty cathartic exercise so I decided to give it a shot. Oddly, the hardest part wasn't coming up with things I wanted to say to people, it was narrowing the list down to just 10 (yes, that's a problem...I'm working on it).
Rules: "Write ten things you've wanted to say to some people but can't, or won't."
1. I don't want you to be with her.
2. It's been three years since I left and you're still holding it against me; that's why our friendship doesn't work anymore.
3. I know you're gay and, I'm telling you, it doesn't matter. It's not going to stop me from helping you achieve everything we've dreamed of. I swear.
4. Your politics makes me look at you differently.
5. I'll always be a disappointment to you so I've just stopped trying...
6. You let me down in a way that words cannot begin to describe. I'm livid at you for that betrayal but, most of all, I will never forgive you for tainting my idealism.
7. I was wondering if you'd like to go grab a drink sometime.
8. Shut. The. Fuck. Up. For chrissakes, the world is not all about you.
9. I don't know how we fell into this friendship but I am so, so grateful for it.
10. I find myself constantly torn between doing what I selfishly want, doing what you say you want (based on years of others undervaluing you) and doing what you deserve. It makes all of our interactions awkward.
As I've noted on the blog previously, I have been a lifetime soap fan, thanks in large part to my mother. It's a habit I've been trying to shake for years now, but then I'll spend one Saturday stuck inside, get caught watching a Soapnet marathon and my daytime addiction will resurface. Thankfully, watching soaps is no longer the albatross it once was--thanks to Youtube, I can limit the amount of time I indulge my addiction.
Daytime is dying. With each passing day, the likelihood that I'll be able to torment my children with soaps, instead of afterschool cartoons, grows slimmer. CBS's willingness to cancel Guiding Light after its historic 72-year run means that no show is safe if it fails to live up to expectations. And truth be told, more and more, it's becoming harder for me, as a soap fan, to defend daytime's existence. Seriously, I've read fanfiction with more imagination than some soaps serve up on a daily basis.
But, as is often the case with daytime, even at the lowest points, something happens to give you hope and this week, that hope has come in the form of One Life to Live. The show has been hitting on all cylinders for a while now but this week has just been stellar...
There's so much that's worth highlighting, but--me being me--I thought the gay storyline between Kyle Lewis and Oliver Fisher was noteworthy.
I hate drawing equivalencies between LGBT storylines in daytime--because, really, who sits around comparing heterosexual love stories?--but...this might be the most nuanced (and true to life) gay/lesbian/bisexual storyline EVER on daytime.
(FWIW, Kyle and Fish (as he's called) first appeared together on June 17 and now, less than two months later, they have their first on-screen kiss. You can watch their entire relationship unfold, here.)