February 25th, 2005

hermione by oatmilk

"John Barleycorn must die."

More rightclicklick hotness.
And dude, am i the only person on the planet who thinks the vast majority of the LotR actors are not attractive?
Also: I was never into the whole Brad Pitt sex symbol thing (and still am not into Tom Cruise as such) but then i saw Thelma and Louisa my first year at college and i keep seeing him in things since and thinking, "Mmm, hot." I feel so... normal.

So, last night i was all, "Mmm, tragedy," but today i found myself constantly putting down A Thousand Acres because it's a modern King Lear and i knew it would be depressing.

NMB's meeting with us next week to discuss the papers we handed in as well as our ideas for our final paper. I was surprised by how many students are doing theirs on topics we've discussed in class thus far. Heather's doing hers on fakelore in modern paganism. I'm in heart.

Oh, Judith Halberstam. Coming in late didn't help my understanding of the lecture either. I did understand at least some of what she said, though.
I came in during the part when she was talking about how it's important to see, not just call for, alternatives -- that essays whose introduction, conclusion, and meat are "X is bad" are not entirely useful.
Then she moved into forgetting in movies. She said that memory is linked with identity and pointed out that comedic representations of forgetting are often accompanied by trans characters. She also talked about how many cartoon movies (Babe, Chicken Run, Finding Nemo) subvert systems of exploitation, and i instinctively wanted to problematize that though i still haven't figured out how to articulate it, but i did appreciate that she often talked about the conservative reading as well as the hopeful radical reading of various things -- not pretending that things have only one meaning. I am also impressed by her ability to read movies so complexly. She talked about how in Finding Nemo Dorrie swims alongside the family without being a part of it and she talked about cooperation/coalition, about having relationships that don't fit societal models.
"I haven't said much about desire, which is unusual for me." -JH during the Q&A
During the Q&A, someone asked about trans people in the Olympics and she talked about how she's not interested in policing bodies and about steroids and i think there was an implication that the idea of an ideal natural body is a fiction and she said that the way she sees it, the people who really blow the competition away are always bodied in some way that makes them different from the rest of the competition, like how Lance Armstrong's muscles don't produce the lactic acid burn like most people's do, so he can run himself into the ground because he doesn't feel his legs burning up. (I had never heard this before, but a quick Google gets me "Armstrong can maintain incredible speeds even when going up the most daunting climbs of the Tour and at times even specialist climbers are unable to keep pace with him on a consistent basis. The ability to maintain this high cadence for such long distances is based on his extremely high anaerobic threshold, allowing him to work at a high intensity without building up lactic acid levels that force lesser athletes to back off. Much of his training is based on raising this level, and in learning exactly where the limit is.") She actually used the word "flawed," which i thought was interesting, because we always think of exceptional athletes as this really positive thing, but their bodies differ from the norm and the value judgements we make about body variances are in some ways arbitrary.
She didn't like Million Dollar Baby. She saw it as reprising Hilary Swank's Boys Don't Cry role in a way -- the message being that if you are a girl who doesn't fit gendered expectations, you get beat up. She also thought it unrealistic since Hilary Swank is so tiny. She said there's this scene where two bulldaggers come in and Hilary Swank knocks them out, but if that happened in real life she would end up on her back. (I looked at Sarah Newby, and she was dying, so i felt validated as not being the only person who had heard it that way.)
When she closed the lecture, she said she was doing something at Food For Thought that night at 7 and there was gonna be a burlesque show. As it turned out, it's in Amherst, so no burlesque show for me. Le sigh.

Cat said she can't imagine me being a first year, that i'm such a senior that she can't imagine me being an awkward first year, though she can imagine me walking in all "Grr, I hate everything." This means more to me than i can say. She also said that my door was one of the first ones she saw and she liked my "Men are from Earth. Women are from Earth. Deal with it." postcard but also worried that i would be intimidating. Dude, since when am i intimidating? ;)

photos of Alex Keller from the Rally Day show which capture that demeanor that i found so off-putting.

Senior Ball theme = Breakfast at Tiffany's. WTF? It's the same night as my house's Senior Banquet, though, so yay for an excuse not to go.
One of the forms for commencement has you write out the phonetic spelling of your name (they give you a key). Dear Norwood High School: take note.

I wasn't going to discuss "Lies My Parents Told Me" because it so quickly gets so painful for all involved, but i got sucked into discussion again and it was actually good 'cause yay respectful and thoughtful dialogue, and per usual it helped me clarify things in my own head. And scrollgirl articulated for me why discussion of that ep so often leads to badness -- "there are so many character loyalties involved and people so often misconstrue people's opinions as implying other opinions that those people don't necessarily have." (phrasing mine)

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anime night

"Is this the return to Oz?"

Today: Couldn't see blue in the sky, but it was still bright, almost blindingly so due to the fresh snow. Clearly i'm a freak; i did errands outside without a coat. And there was snow falling while i walked, almost unreal.

A Thousand Acres is more depressing than King Lear. And now that i've read it i wanna reread King Lear, in large part for the differences between the sisters. Except there's only so much time one wants to spend in the deep pit that is either of those narratives.

I just want to know what i'm doing next year. I keep planning things and then realizing that i don't even know if my circumstances will be such that those plans would make sense. And my current feeling is that i don't want to be in a PhD program next year, but i think that's my psyche reacting to the fact that i don't think i'll get in places. And yes i should just focus on all the work i have to do for the next two weeks, let the present be sufficient unto itself and all that, maybe meditate or something. I just feel everything so intensely recently. It may turn out that i'm hormonal, but that's not a helpful answer.

You know how... You get scared. Or worried, or nervous. And you don't want to be scared or worried or nervous, so you push it to the back of your mind. You try not to think about it. The limbic system is what lets you do that -- it's like a filter in your brain that keeps your feelings in check. They took that filter out of River. She feels everything. She can't not.
-Simon, in "Ariel"

I'm considering getting one of these icons.

Closing time
Open all the doors and let you out into the world
Closing time
You don't have to go home but you can't stay here
Closing time
Time for you to go out to the places you will be from
Closing time
Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end