Monday, September 29, 2003

90210

I was just thinking about the Peach Pit, where the 'gang' on Beverly Hills 90210 used to hang out. And then as the show got hipper it became the PPAD - the Peach Pit After Dark. God, those were heady times.

Saturday, September 27, 2003

Crazy Days

The film fest got off to spectacular start, but at just 3 days in i have fizzled a little. First day i saw 4 films, yesterday 1 and tonight i think i will go to one later. The thing is the weather has turned beautiful again, so i spent part of the day outside weeding my garden. I am also feeling a little dissertation induced anxiety, so i have been working on it for a while today. Monday i won't be able to see any films at all - i volunteer and then in the evening i have hockey practice. Oh well, i am just going to what i can and hopefully see about 10 films.

Plans for India are starting to fall into place. Looks like we are going to go on Oct 24. Since i am going with airline employees it is like going standby, but i am looking forward to the suspense and the spontenaity of it. Lately i have been thinking that i am not spontaneous enough. So the plan is to leave here hopefully on Oct 24, but if the flights are full then we can't go. So we don't really know when we will end up in Delhi, which means we can't book a hotel or train or connecting plane. But i think the unknownness of it will be fun. Unfortunately, the people i am travelling with will be thuroughly jet lagged and culture shocked and probably won't see the beauty in it the way i will.

Current Reads
I am reading RAVELSTIEN by Saul Bellow right now. It will take me forever to finish it even though it is not very long. Can't say i am enjoying it all that much, but it does bring sleep on pretty quickly, so its not all bad.

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

the world needs more movies

Last night we went to go see LOST IN TRANSLATION by Sophia Copala. Brilliant really. Bill Murray was perfect for the role of an aging actor stuck in Japan to promote a whiskey. Check out the trailer. The humour at times is subtle but great. But then after a while i started to feel a little conflicted. I mean the reason the film is funny is because of all these weird Japanese things he encounters, and then i thought - is it right to be laughing at Japan all the time? Because i am not sure that a Japanese person would find the same things funny. So then are we truly laughing at them, which is mean, or are we laughing with them? Is this just another form of Orientalism? Perpetuating the myths of an essentially different other that we have no hope of understanding?
In addition to be being funny, the story and the friendship that arises between Bill Murray's character and Scarlette Johanson's character is rather touching. None of this 'hey we are in a foreign country, let's fall into bed together and pretend its jet lag or culture shock' thing.

The Vancouver International Film Festival starts tomorrow. I have resolved myself to the fact that i can't possibly go see movies all day every day, but at the same time i hope to get off to a good start. Tomorrow i plan to see PLAN COLUMBIA: CASHING IN ON THE DRUG WAR FAILURE, Prisoner of Paradise and Morning Sun. I'll report back on them later.
And just as a little FYI, if you were debating about seeing CASA DE LOS BABYS, ELEPHANT OR THE EVENT at VIFF, they've already been picked up for wide release.

Monday, September 22, 2003

monday, back to the grind

First off, i must welcome Lil Grommet into the world. He made his appearance on Friday morning. He tried to get out for Survivor (little trooper) but didn't quite make it. Thank god for VCRs! He is healthy, as are the parents, and has been christened as the Lil Grommet in blog land.

The weekend flew by. I spent alot of it volunteering at the Vancouver International Film Festival doing advanced sales. The festival itself starts on Thursday, so expect a slow down in the blogs as i plan to see multiple movies a day and will be rather busy.

Yesterday the Brain and I went to see Matchstick Men. We didn't really know what it was about when we went, but had heard good things. It's nice walking into a movie when you haven't seen all the good parts in a trailer already. The acting was really good. Nicholas Cage plays an agrophobic, OCD conman, and Alison Lohman plays his just discovered daughter. She was amazing for such a young actress. Keep your eyes on her. And the story wasn't the typical Hollywood shlock for once.

Current Reads
I recently finished THE IMPRESSIONIST by Hari Kunzru. Quite a unique novel, I really enjoyed it. Starts off in Agra, moves to a zenana in Punjab, then eventually to England and ends in Africa. Quite exciting and very well written. Maybe i was so impressed with the writing because the novel i read before it was a little weak, or maybe the writing is truly great. Who knows.

Now i am reading a novel by Will Rhode. I managed to buy the British edition, called PAPERBACK RAITA at Book Warehouse for just $4.99, but it has been rereleased in North America as PAPERBACK ORIGINAL. It is about a British flunky in India who has 5 years to write a bestseller if he is to inherit 5 million pounds from his deceased father. I have picked up a number of inaccuracies in his facts, but this should escape most people's attention. It is a light novle, though enjoyable. Oh the wild capers young backbackers in a foreign land will get into!

Thursday, September 18, 2003

Survival Discussion Questions

Oooh how exciting. it's like having our very own Friday Five!

1. most likely to win
At this point my bets are on Andrew, though Darrah may be up there too. So far she is doing the whole flying- below- the- radar thing, which i feel is always a good strategy. Also she is a mortician, which is sort of unusual and she likes hunting, which is also unique for a girl. I think she will surprise us. Andrew has a good chance of winning, not just because he is good looking, articulate and intelligent, but also because his last name is Savage, and that's cool. I think Trish wil be our drak horse in the runing or whatever you call the person who sort of sneaks up from behind and before you know it they are a major threat. Even though she is slightly older than some, she is fit. She has run multiple marathons and on top of that just seems pretty darn athletic. Also she is old enough to be able to play the political situations with some finnesse and avoid being just plain annoying.

2. most likely to have sexual tension.
Ah yes, good old ST as me and VOR like to call it. This is a difficult one, but I see Ostin as being both quite sexual (in a bad way) and able to create a fair bit of tension! Aside from that i think that it is too early to tell.

3. most likely to get naked first
Well that's been answered for us already. But i still would have said Osten.

4. most likely to annoy
Where do i begin? Tiajuna better stop squealing and stuff. The scout lead can stop scouting anyday now and Rupert could get to be a bit much if you were stuck on an island with him. But as a viewer i think he is pretty funny and will add entertainment value to the show.

5. Most likely to fall down alot
That would be Rupert.

Survival of the Fittest

Tonight is the big night, the season premiere of Survivor! Can you believe it is season 7 already and we are still watching this stuff? Thankfully Voice of Reason has provided us with some discussion questions to guide us in our mindless viewing. Hit it VOR -
1. Most likely to win

2. Most likely to have sexual tension (or something more) (2 players)

3. Most likely to get naked first

4. Most likely to annoy the shit out of you (a somewhat personal question although we all may feel the same)

5. Most likely to fall a lot during challenges, like the fat couple who lost on the first episode of Amazing Race

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Back after a bit of a break

Whew, been busy the past couple of days. The 'rents were in town after cruising the north coastline for a week. Good visit. Lots of talking. Boy, those old people can jabber!

Still not officially a student. The powers that be are still doing paper work, which means that i had to return ALL of my library books, i can't get the forms filled out so that i don't have to pay back my student loans, and i don't have free bus service!

I had my first hockey practice on Monday night. It was quite fun. I am not as good at the skating as i thought i would be, but i guess that will come in time. I like doing the drills and stuff, but the games may not quite be my thing. If you have a student card there is free skating at the university arena every morning from 9-11. Once i am officially a student again i will go to that and practice my skating.

Current Reads
I finally finished HOUSE ON FIRE by Charles Foran. It wasn't as good as i expected it to be. In particular, i didn't like the writing style, but some people might. The story itself is set in the non existent country of Gyatso, meant to ressemble Tibet. The story itself is pretty good, about a Canadian journalist in search of this Gyastian writer. But too often he waxes poetic about the spiritual nature of the Gyatsian people etc. The novel is divided into three parts. The third part appealed to me the most and seemed to have some good insights.

Friday, September 12, 2003

Weaker than what?

Last night the Brain and i went to see the Weakerthans. What a great concert. You sould really check out there stuff. According to someone, a few years ago their music would have been considered EMO. I think that means emotional/ emotive rock - whatever that's supposed to mean. I would rather describe them as a home grown canadian band with great lyrics. And talk about a heavy bass. The low point of the night was that the bass made our table (yes we are old and sat at a table to enjoy the show) vibrate slowly pushing my beer closer and closer to the edge until finally it fell into my lap. So i think the moral of the story is that heavy base is good unless you are not paying attention to your beer on a vibrating table.

It's always a surprise to see a band you like in person. They do not look like i thought they would. Especially the lead singer. I wanted him to be tall and lanky with dark mouldering eyes. Instead he was average hieght, a little skinny and blond. Ever since i saw Almost Famous i think rocker should look like Jason Lee in that movie.

Thursday, September 11, 2003

lest we forget

As i am sure everyone knows, today is September 11, two years after what has gone in history as 9/11. I do not intend to diminish the atrocities that occured on that day, but i do wish to highlight the fact that other atrocities that happend on this day in history should not be forgotten or over looked.

Thirty years ago on September 11, 1973 a military coup lead by Pinochet overthrew the existing democratically elected government of Chile. Offical reports put the count at 3000 dead. Unofficial reports put the number much higher. The United States did not consider this an act of terrorism.

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

huh?

The Brain will be coming home late from work today. He's getting some minor dental surgery done. Minor is his word for it not mine. I would be freaking out. The dentist is going to scrap off a layer of skin from the roof of his mouth and graph it onto his quickly deteriorating gums. This may be minor, but it sounds painful!! You kow how the roof of your mouth feels when it gets scrapped up from a toasted sandwich? Multiply that.

Sacred River Watch
The Ganges in India is quite swollen right now. Good monsoon I guess and they needed it! Our Banaras correspondent, Rocky the kitabwalla, reports that today when he went to open his shop he found Ma Ganga at his doorstep. If it rises much more he will have to move all of his books and that is not fun.

Current Reads
WEll i finished tHE NO.1 LADIES DETECTIVE AGENCY. What a let down. You know, Alexander McCall Smith's books are all over the best seller lists and i can't understand why. Maybe i just didn't get the book, but i doubt it. Yes, it is about a lady detective in Botswana, which i thought would be intereting, but its not. Very simplistically written. No nuance. Straight forward. Am i going to read the other books in the series? That's a good question. I am a sucker for a series and they are so simplistic that i could read them in my sleep....

On finishing THE NO.1 LADIES DETECTIVE AGENCY i turned immediately to LOST IN A GOOD BOOK by Jasper Fforde. Brilliant! This is the continued literary adventures of Thursday Next. Like THE EYRE AFFAIR, it is witty, low brow and high brow, adventurous - basically everything you could ever want in a novel. Not to mention that i think that Jasper Fforde is the most original wirter i have ever read. Go on, read his books. Even the Brain likes him.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

blogging hits the big time

Check out this article on blogging in this weeks Maclean's magazine.

Sunday, September 07, 2003

Snow in June

I tell you, what is the world coming to when just one week into school Shopper's Drug Mart has changed all of its displays to Halloween. I'm not just talking mini chocolate bars and stuff, but full fledged costumes, skeletons, face paint... you name it. And the thing that makes me the most mad about it is that they have completely overlooked the fact that Thanksgiving is the next holiday just because it isn't marketable! Jeez. And Thanksgiving is my favourite holiday!

Singin' in the Rain

Did you miss me? I thought so. I missed you too.

At last the rain has come. It has been so dry around here for so long. It has been raining since the afternoon. I just love the sound of it, but by about mid november i am sure that i will be sick of it and complaining.

So, camping was a blast. We went to Pender Island. The main purpose of the trip was disc golf and we hit an awesome course on the island. It was my first disc golf experience, but trust me when i say this is the best course ever.

Current Reads
I finished THE DIVINE ECONOMY OF SALVATION by Prisilla Uppal. I quite liked it. She is a young Canadian writer and this is her first novel. I was very reminescent of Carole Goodman's booked that i read about a month ago.

Now i am reading The No.1 Ladies Dective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith. This series of books seems to be really popular right now. And since i tend to like books set in Africa i thought i would give it a try. But so far it is 'not all that' as girls in the 'hood say (what hood exactly i don't know). I will keep you posted on what i think.

Also on the topic of books, finally someone has picked up and registered one of my Bookcrossing releases. I am very happy.

Time for bed. I am still recovering from the camping i think.