Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Heigh Ho

My friend Sam posted this awesome video about Disney the other day which highlighted Disney's perpetual remaking of Snow White. The video was interesting, but what was really surprising was reading this blog about cartoon songs that labelled "Heigh Ho" as the best cartoon song. I don't know how I feel about that, or for that matter, how I feel about a number of the other songs that were ranked on the top ten. Certainly not ones that I would choose. Nonetheless, I am happy that the reinforcement of "off to work we go" is something that has bombarded me in the past two days. I have been extremely lazy yesterday and today (and I continue to be bad today because I have a party and a concert to go to in just a bit). All of this just to say, in a week from right now, I will be done. A Master. Have a Master's Degree. Done. Finito. Ah, the bliss. The next blog will come then, but until then, maybe you can contemplate this passage I just dissected for my MA Project.

“Margaret had often wondered at the disturbance that takes place in the world’s waters, when Love, who seems so tiny a pebble, slips in. Whom does Love concern beyond the beloved and the lover? Yet his impact deluges a hundred shores. No doubt the disturbance is really the spirit of the generations, welcoming the new generation, and chafing against the ultimate Fate, who holds all the seas in the palm of her hand. But Love cannot understand this. He cannot comprehend another’s infinity; he is conscious only of his own—flying sunbeam, falling rose, pebble that asks for one quiet plunge below the fretting interplay of space and time. He knows that he will survive at the end of things, and be gathered by Fate as a jewel from the slime, and be handed with admiration rounding the assembly of the god. ‘Men did produce this,” they will say, and saying, they will give men immortality.” (127)

It is from Forster's Howards End

Friday, April 24, 2009

Disgusted, Fucking Disgusted

Between research and writing in these awful days at the end of my Master's Degree, I go home to eat lunch, take a break, and watch some news. The first video on CNN was of the recent suicide of Jaheem Herrera, of the Atlanta area, an eleven year old boy who committed suicide after being taunted by bullies at school. I found out this is something that has happened earlier this month with a Massachusetts's boy. Both boys, taunted by bullies, were most traumatized by the word "gay." Jaheem's mother said that this label was the hardest for Jaheem to accept and what might have put him over the edge.

Here is the link to check out an ABC News video on Carl Walker-Hoover's suicide just earlier this month.

CNN hasn't released their video online yet, but it is something to check out.

Why are kids so mean? Some many people out there have been bullied in their lives, why haven't people done something to change this. Is it simple because childhood bullying just finds its way into adult social aggression?

And why is it that homosexuality and being called "gay" is something that is so hard? Stick and stone may break your bones, but words are somehow making these kids commit suicide. We need to better educate our children. This is a serious social problem.

For all of you out there with children, young relatives, or somehow related to school-age children, please educate them on the severe effects of bullying!

[Sorry I posted this before being finished, I am just so ANGRY right now!]

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

"For Eighty Cents" by Alessandro Morbelli

How fitting that one of my last times in office hours this semester, I would come across a painting called "For Eighty Cents" in my A Year in Art book. Although this wasn't necessarily a pittance in 1895, I understand that the back-breaking work portrayed in the painting was not that easy. And while I know that I am very fortunate to have a job, funding, and a pretty awesome career, I can't help but relate to these women in the painting. Work is hard, and I feel like I always have to bend over backwards to get the job done. Some amazing feat always needs to be accomplished, and I now know that my sense of hyperbole is overtaking me right now. So please feel free to disregard my analogies above.

The painting is quite pretty. I guess you could or may have noticed that I haven't exactly done an entry for each day about the paintings in my book. So o course, I only pick out the ones I like, and one of the things that I love about this painting is the color and reflections that Alessandro Morbelli paints into the canvas.

Monday, April 13, 2009

More Happenings

Okay, so I totally noticed that one of my old college friends (Melody) posted this on her Facebook wall, but I had to post it here too just in case some of my friends that aren't hers who didn't get a chance to see it could see it for the first time. Like her, I am probably way to excited about this, but as you probably know, one of the things I am totally interested in is Happenings. This random occurrence of art and performance being made. I hope you enjoy!

I know that there are some elements to a Happening that are controlled and practiced. Certainly these actors/dancers had to learn their parts. But the sheer joy of some of spectators is just so amazing, and the fact is that many people in the station were probably shocked at this. This rather mild, amusing Happening is one to share.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Sara Bareilles

In honor of my seeing Sara Bareilles in concert tonight (as part of TU's Spring Fest events), I thought I would write this short post about my favorite songs from her debut album, Little Voices. Of course, her first single, "Love Song," has made its way through a number of radio stations, TV shows, and movies. I'm sure it will be one of those enduring songs that will find its way into romantic comedies and angsty romances for the next couple of years. Nevertheless, I think a number of her other songs from Little Voices are much more interesting, and even though they don't get the play time of "Love Song," some of these songs are pretty great.

This video is of "Gravity" is sweet little ballad(?). It is a quite song about love, memory, and relationships. She says in the video that it is about her first real break-up.

This is the video for "Fairytale." On the CD, she sings just a tad bit more tempo. The lyrics for this song are just genius though I think.

Hope you enjoyed the videos!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Movie of the Month: Adventureland

Those of you that know my mantra--"I laughed, I cried, I lived"--for the post-movies reaction will probably not be surprised that I felt it last night when I saw Adventureland. The film was particularly apt for myself and my friend last night since we are both graduating in May and have summer jobs and plans for the fall but still find ourselves in this "existential" or rather mental confluence of emotions and desires. The film, by the director of Superbad, features James (Jesse Eisenberg) pursuing an unplanned summer job at Adventureland, an odd amusement park, in his home town of Pittsburgh. Needless to say, hijinks and romance ensue.

The reason I wanted to feature this as a movie of the month was more than just to draw your attention to. I see it continuing in a long tradition of films that sort of examine life in school and post-school. Of course, The Breakfast Club is an iconic film about high school and teenage life, and I would add that films like Fame and Center Stage offer similar versions for those artistically inclined. And of course, there are the gap movies about life in senior year and movements towards college like The Perfect Score and Can't Hardly Wait. Likewise, films like Real Genius might offer a sort of "life in college" view just like TV shows like Felicity and Greek attempt to show us different views of life.

My current stage of post-college, graduate school life, however, draws me towards films where academics and college graduates find themselves hurtled into the real world where things are so unsafe and unstable. My mind floats toward of film like Reality Bites, and I see Adventureland hovering into this genre of school angst, post-graduation anxiety about how life may or may not fit into the real world.

Anyways, I totally recommend the film, and I hope many people get a chance to see. It had the right percentage of comedy, drama/sadness, and intellectual push to make it a good movie. I was happy to see all of the actors in the film because they did such a good job. Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart, who plays a girl at the park, have these brilliant expressions throughout the movie that convey these moments of desire and anguish. The film also had some great input by characters like Martin Starr, Ryan Reynolds, Kristen Wigg, and Bill Hader. Not to mention that fact that since the show is set in 1987 there was some pretty awesome music. Rock me, Amadeus. Amadeus.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


So, I have wanted to post something about race for a while but was having difficulty for the longest time to find something. Ever since the Louisville conference last year when I participated in a conversation about kids in Atlanta talking about post-race issues, I have been trying to wrap my head around this idea or possibility of being post-race. Needless to say, some of my recent Star Trek viewing has kind of helped with this. But even though Star Trek: The Original Series featured the first interracial kiss on television, it turns America's issues with race in the present and turns that into inter-species issues of the future.

Anyways, last week when I was being a lazy house sitter enjoying my free time in a new place, I did something quite blasphemous. I watched Good Morning America rather than my traditional Today Show. I was ultimately happy with the experience though when I came across this wonderful segment on young people's perception of race in which Diane Sawyer and Robin Roberts recreated a question-and-answer session they had ten years ago. I hope you all get a chance to watch the video. I wasn't able to embed it in this post because of ABC's lending rights.

My initial reaction was very positive. However, at a second glance, I thought it was interesting that the kids mentioned famous black figures in sports and media. I wonder if part of that is because of their exposure to them. It would be kind of difficult for a 10 year old to epitomize Cornel West, right? But I am very pleased to see that some things are maybe changing. I am not foolish enough to claim this as the end of race issues as some of my former DV classmates were, but if these kids' responses are any indication of a changing future, I think the forthcoming decades will be an interesting few to live through.