Thursday, June 29, 2006

Hunch confirmed

You know sometimes you have two friends and you think, "wow, if they were in the same place, I bet they'd get along really well; they have lots in common, including things that I do not share with either one."

And then one of them posts on her livejournal about liking a book with dragons and the Napoleonic wars.

And then the other one posts on her livejournal about liking a book with dragons and the Napoleonic wars.

And you think, yes, I do believe I was correct.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Don't all you journalists have English degrees?

So, the most annoying article in the Times today probably was Alex Witchel moaning about having to make polite conversation with those seated next to her at dinner. (Remind me not to sit next to her, should the occasion arise) But the second most annoying article, according to this gal, was this: Caryn James on the shocking new trend that "more and more movies" display, in which a moral lesson is learned after a sinful character does all sorts of despicable things. The groundbreaking trend? It's actually more fun for the audience to watch the bad stuff than the redemption.

Sound familiar? It's probably from such flicks as Click? Bruce Almighty? The Devil Wears Prada? Or, wait a minute . . . devil, devil . . . that reminds me: maybe this is the plot of Dr. Faustus, Paradise Lost, and the hundreds of works influenced by them for the past 500 years? Just a thought, Caryn.

Also -- the eye has now mysteriously almost completely cleared up. Color me baffled.

Depressing news closer to home

Woke up this morning with a mildly goopy and bloodshot eye.

It's baaaaaa-aaaaaaaaaaaack.

Though, admittedly, not as bad as before.

Appointment with the optho for tomorrow afternoon.

Looking into magic charms and/or patron saint(s) of eye problems.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006


One of the benefits of being a generally compulsively busy person (and believe me, there are many) is that I don't usually read the entire newspaper. I glance at page one and the editorials, read arts and Thursday/Sunday Stupids cover-to-cover and occasionally skim the science/metro/business (and even more occasionally) sports sections. But, now that the whole teaching-kiddies-to-write-plays thing has subsided, I've got some time on my hands, and, mainly as a method of creative avoidance, I've been reading the whole thing. . . and shit's fucked up.

I know that the primary business of newspapers is to sell drama and that there might not be anything more annoying than overpriviliged white lady hand-wringing about global warming, but I tell ya, I feel like wringing. I'm fundamentally pessimistic about the ability of this country (and, to tell the truth, other countries as well . . . sorry, Europe, but your track record's not as good as you think it is, and Asia -- oy) to adopt measures to halt or even slow it down. And I know the Earth's climate has been through a lot, since before there was even the possibility of humans, but I also think that massive climate change will likely cause enormous human suffering, even if some new forms of species pick up where the old ones left off. I also tend to figure that the suffering will be distributed, as it tends to be, largely to those who were already suffering in the first place.

I feel pretty good about the life that Beloved Husband and I lead from an ecological perspective (bike-based transportation, recycling, composting vegetable waste, buying local organic produce when possible, using energy efficient light bulbs, living with a hot house in the summer and a cold one in the winter, etc.) but I also feel like an ineffectual hippie weirdo bucket drop.

Anyway, enough whining from me. The Earth and people will contine to function and maybe things will get better. At least the Warren Buffett thing is good news. I know because I read every single article on it.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Otherness and other thoughts

Saw two v. different pieces of art this weekend, but they've both got me thinking about similar stuff. First was Sunday afternoon, when I went to NYC and got student-rush tix for The Light in the Piazza, which is closing soon, so I figured it was now or never.

So beautiful. I mean, I realize, duh, everyone loves this show, so I wasn't exactly surprised to find it beautiful, but I really, really enjoyed it, more than I've liked most things I've seen recently. Victoria Clark was great, and the music was lovely, but I think the thing that I liked the most was how disturbing it was. The story [warning: musical spoiler ahead] concerns a mother and her daughter visiting Italy. The daughter is mentally handicapped and the show's central dilemma is how much of a "normal" life she should lead. And it's fraught: what's best for the daughter, the mother, the daughter's boyfriend who doesn't know about her situation, responsibility vs. taking chances -- it was all dealt with. And, here's the big, big thing . . . the production doesn't demand that you agree with it. It presents certain characters in a particular situation, the choices they make, and allows you to say "Wow, I think that's a terrible decision," or "Gosh, I'm afraid and don't know what's going to happen" but you're disagreeing with the characters not the play. To make an admittedly facetious comparison, if you object to Forrest Gump, you also object to Forrest Gump. Not so with this show.

Then, on Monday, Beloved Husband and I went to see X-Men 3. Which was actually quite similar in terms of moral quandries to TLITP. The X-Men are, by virtue of being mutants, different, physically and mentally, from "normal" people, and the central dilemma of the movie is how much mutants should be pushed toward (or even offered an option of) normality. However . . . it's not a good movie. It could have been a good movie. It should have a good movie. It has good actors, interesting ideas, and an enormous budget, but instead of bringing them together for some good, old-fashioned storytelling, it pulled confusingly at our heartstrings (evoking ACT-UP meetings, abortion clinics, and DNA modification) and then just blew crap up for 15 minutes. Also, I think it bears mentioning that in the big "do you change your powers or use them" debate the two main female characters decided to give up their extraordinary abilities (either by getting the vaccine or asking Wolverine to killing them), whereas the man who faced it ended up staying the way he was. And flying his big gay wings over San Francisco. Which is great and all, don't get me wrong, but why did he get to be loved for the way he was and not the chicks? Just asking.

Also, in a final (please, please, I hope) eye update: I woke up yesterday with a case of pink eye in my right eye (yes, the one that has been plagued since mid-May). Went to the doctor, got some antibiotic drops, and it's looking way better, but still. Truce? Please?

Tuesday, June 13, 2006


All right, world, I'm back, after a harrowing, but in many ways very good three days. The weekend was spent at Camp Wightman with the kids from the playwriting program. [And, yes, it was a little weird to take a group of entirely minority children to a location pronounced Camp White-man. To their credit, they got over it way before I did.] It was fun, but also exhauting, just being that present to another person's needs and never really getting a moment off or to myself or to relax. The best part of the whole weekend though was not the awesome camp activities -- sharing someone's first s'more, nature hike, swim in a lake, night away from home -- but the plays that they wrote. They're really totally amazing, alive with imagination and unexpected plot twists. Also, a soft-shoe number performed by a chorus of dead professional cat-fighters. As casting stands right now, I'm playing an evil high school Mean Girl (typecasting, I know) and a magical, four-armed, rainforest-dwelling woman with stars on her cheeks that can control the weather. I'm excited for costumes . . . and when am I not?

I also got the papilloma removed yesterday, which was a little more harrowing than expected.

Me, a week ago: So, should I arrange for someone to come pick me up?
Receptionist: Oh, no, this is a really easy operation, you can just walk out of here.

So I wasn't particularly worried until the UNANTICIPATED giant needle came for my eye. I'll admit, there may be a philosophy behind this: if we tell the patients we'll be sticking a giant needle in their eye, they will probably freak out, so let's just hope they don't notice. However, it's very difficult not to notice a giant needle WHEN IT'S COMING AT YOUR EYE. So, I kind of freaked out and started hysterically sobbing (I'm sure, at least 50% because I had finished the last 30 pages of Gilead in the waiting room and was pretty close to tears already). Hysterical sobs finally calmed down, papilloma was excised, but I was in no condition to get myself home. Luckily, Beloved Husband showed up and has been a superstar for the past 24 hours as I've mostly slept, popped Advil, and wiped fluid from my eye. It's looking a lot better today and will hopefully be somewhat normal looking/feeling by the end of the week. Because I am really, really sick of having a hurty eye.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Rain appreciation

Just taking the time to point out that I'm really glad it's raining today.

I'm still grumpy from the swollen, warty eye and don't really feel like doing anything that approaches productive this morning.

And, since it's dripping a dismal rain, I can accept my sloth as opposed to feeling oppressed by the sunshine into jogging or some such nonsense.

Bad moods ---- bad weather

Good moods ---- good weather

When they switch up, it's all confusing.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006


I am having a bad month with eye health.

Having been previously diagnosed with a papilloma (scheduled -- well, in fact rescheduled, but that's another story -- for removal on Monday), and having suffered through a disturbing round of near-blindness caused by Colorado dust, I woke up this morning to find my eye swollen, purple, and tender.

Diagnosis from the eye doctor at Health Services? A stye.

I am very sick of it hurting when I look at things. And, come to think of it, when I don't look at things.