Tag Archive: books


2011 Master Tally

It’s the first of the year, and once again I’m telling myself that I’m going to start keeping track of the things I watch and read because:

1. I don’t remember shite
and
2. it’s fun to share.

So here begins my tallying for 2011!   I’ll try to keep it just a simple list here, and do separate entries for comments and reviews and whatnot.

2011 Movies:

1. Mad Max 01/02
2. The Road Warrior 01/02
3. Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome 01/02
4. The Forbidden Planet 01/02
5. Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans 01/07
6. Fort Apache 01/08
7. The Commancheros 01/08
8. The Undefeated 01/08
9. Star Trek: The Motion Picture 01/09
10. Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan 01/09
11. Star Trek: The Search for Spock 01/09
12. Star Trek: Generations 01/09
13. Star Trek: Nemesis 01/09
14. The Ruling Class 01/11
15. Pootie Tang 01/13
16. Treasure of the Sierra Madre 01/14
17. Ip Man 01/15
18. Curse of Frankenstein 01/15
19. Dr. Who: The Androids of Tara 01/16
20. The Sorcerer’s Apprentice 01/16
21. Dr. Who: The Ark in Space 01/18
22. Santa Sangre 01/19
23. The Pink Panther 01/20
24. The Brain That Wouldn’t Die 01/22
25. Le Mans 01/22
26. Jason and the Argonauts 01/22
27. The Abominable Dr. Phibes 01/23
28. Dr. Phibes Rises Again 01/23
29. The Last Man on Earth 01/23
30. The Honey Pot 01/25
31. Krull 01/26
32. Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed 1/26
33. Quantum of Solace 1/27
34. Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein 1/29
35. Abbott & Costello Meet the Mummy 1/29
36. Lust for Life 1/30
37. Flash Gordon 2/2
38. Legends of the Fall 2/3
39. The Brother From Another Planet 2/4
40. Erik the Viking 2/4
41. Crazy Heart 2/4
42. the Fifth Element 2/5
43. Being There 2/5
44. Viva Zapata 2/6
45. The Pride of the Yankees 2/6
46. Sunrise 2/6

2011 Books:

1. On A Pale Horse Piers Anthony 01/01
2. A Game of Thrones George RR Martin 01/16

Collecting my thoughts.

I’m having one of those days.  One of those days where I feel like I need to write about something, I actually really want to write about something, but the idea of undertaking the writing completely overwhelms me.  So rather than doing a proper write-up, like something I might put on the website, I will now use this space to gather my thoughts in hopes of unburying myself from this mental avalanche. 

Yesterday, the world lost an icon.  I’ll go so far as to say we were robbed.  I’m sure most of you already know this, and while it pains me to repeat it, we must come to terms with the fact that Ronnie James Dio is gone.  I thought flipping on the iPod and rocking out this morning would be appropriate, and it is, but it makes me rather melancholy.  I’m not one to get upset over death, especially of someone I don’t know personally, and I guess there’s a hundred reasons why this particular loss affects me so.  Maybe because his music played such a big part in shaping me into the person I am today.  Maybe it was the unexpected nature of it.  I guess the reasons aren’t as important as the fact that this person touched my life and countless others, and he will be sorely missed.  I like to think that he ran into Frank Frazetta on the way up to the clouds, and the two of them are riding saber-tooth tigers through the sky and weilding battle axes and are ready to kick the shit out of the afterlife.  And any time someone throws metal, we’ll think of Dio.

But enough sadness.  For about a week I’ve been wanting to write about the book I just finished.  It’s the first in a series of five, and now that I’ve moved on to the second book, I figure I should write about the first before it falls too far out of mind.  The series: The Chronicles of Amber, by Roger Zelazny.  Book one, Nine Princes In Amber, is IMHO effing brilliant.  I don’t think I’ll ruin it by giving you the premise, so here it is: a guy wakes up from a coma after a car accident with no memory, but a really bad feeling that his crash was no accident and that some nasty shit is going down.  He then must piece together bits of his identity and determine not only who he is, but who is out to get him, why, and what the hell he is gonna do about it.  Since this isn’t an official review I’ll try to be brief, but here’s a few tidbits I think are great:

1. The main character: Corwin, our “hero”, may not have an identity but he has a hell of a personality.  Even in doubt he manages to come across as very sure of himself, and his luck is astounding yet completely believable.  Some of the initial exchanges he has with his sister are priceless.  And for being a hero and a prince (oops, spoiler. kinda.), he’s incredibly relatable, completely endearing, and impeccably normal somehow.  Which ties into…

2. The tone: written from a firsthand perspective, every word we read is Corwin’s.  Part of the beauty of the way that it’s written is in his language.  He starts off very casual, very normal (for lack of a better word), and as he learns more about himself we see him leaning more and more toward formal speech, regal speech.  But the brilliance is in the way that Zelazny weaves the two together, and it really sets Corwin apart from the rest of the characters who wholly enhabit the world of Amber.  It serves as a constant reminder that he is not like them, that he is different.  And in the end, it’s that little bit of difference that gives him the edge against all others. 

Ok, that wasn’t even as brief as I wanted to be, and since I plan to expand on these for a full-fledged CMDS article, I’ll save the rest for that.  Consider this a teaser.  BWAHAHA.  And here’s the cheesiest book cover I could find:  

 

So I’ll leave you with that for the moment, as I feel this review is going to take a while.  Ahhh, book reviews.  Feels like I’m in college again.  As long as this doesn’t turn into a 15-page paper on the use of language as identity (and it might!), we should be alright. 

Be excellent to each other, little ones.  Love you, mean it.

Good morning!  Happy Tuesday to you all, hope you SXSWers are finding ways to stay dry out there.  I could almost feel sorry for you if I wasn’t blinded by raging jealousy.  :)  

So far, the news today has been relatively interesting from a geeky perspective.  Check these out:

The NCBI (National Center for Biotechnology Information, a division of the National Institute for Health) is testing the reactions of brown tree snakes to human blood using…wait for it…dirty tampons. (SPOILER: it eats them.)

Scott Snyder and Stephen King are making vampires scary again!!  This blurb from Snyder sells it:
“So part of the point of American Vampire is to make (vampires) scary again. In the original ads for the series, we wanted to do pictures of Skinner standing on a heap of dead old-fashioned vampire bodies, grinning, all bloody with smoking guns in his hands. And the tagline was ‘I don’t fucking sparkle.’ We thought about using another that said: ‘This ain’t your little sister’s vampire.’ The idea was that American Vampire is not a pin-up. When (Skinner) changes into a vampire, he’s fucking scary. You don’t want to kiss him.”  Good on you, boys.  Looking forward to it.

Some new details about Universal’s The Thing prequel.  Contrary to io9.com contributor/article author Meredith Woerner, I think the foreign language bit is a plus.  I fear no subtitle.  Although one must remember the difference between a film coming from a foreign house and one that comes from the US and makes poor use of a foreign language as a gimmick.  Let’s hope that isn’t the case here.  Also, CARPENTER RULES!  

In astro-geek news, there may be a brown dwarf star floating around in the Oort Cloud and hurling comets at us.  Freaky.

And from the Bad Astronomer himself, MAKE IT SO (TINY)

Did I tell you guys I’m reading a Star Wars novel?  I almost don’t want to admit it; that’s a level of geek that I don’t normally get into.  But it came up in conversation the other night as Mick and I were returning from a wander around Barnes & Noble.  I believe it began when I proposed the question, “will people ever stop writing Star Wars novels?”  To which he responded, “not if they keep selling!”  But then he mentioned that he had read a few, specifically one written that chronicled events that happened between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi.  Even a casual, non-obsessive SW fan like myself has wondered what happened in that gap.  And since I had just finished Dune the night before (finally!), it was time for me to pick something else up anyways.  And here we are.  I’m reading a Star Wars novel. 

So far (meaning “60 or so pages in”), it’s alright.  The writing isn’t great, and the story is slow-going.  A lot of the first few chapters are spent chronicling (through dreams, flashbacks, and other passe plot devices) important events in Empire.  They’ve introduced a new main character, a Yakuza-style boss who’s the Emperor’s pet and equal with Vader.  I’m guessing since he’s never heard from in Jedi that he probably dies at the end.  But knowing the end and being interested in reading how it comes about are different, and I’m hoping it’s something befittingly grisly.  Also, did I mention the author’s name is Steve Perry?  Which I find fitting, because this might as well be the Journey of the literary world: not particularly awesome, but solid enough to find a lasting place with its loyal fan base; a guilty pleasure for most; entertaining enough however conventional and banal it may seem at times.  It works.   

Anywho, I’ll leave you with that for the morning.  Mick goes in for more teeth work today, so I’ll be busy tonight nursing and hugging and being nice to him.  Take care, my lovelies!

The Dancing Never Ends!

I just drove my husband out of the living room.

Not on purpose, mind you.  We each sat down to do a bit of writing, and were simply reminded that we don’t work the same.  It’s not a bad thing; if anything, it’s probably a good thing most times.  I have an issue where I have to have complete silence when I write.  I can sometimes work with the tv on mute, but most times I’ll turn it off completely.  Mick, on the other hand, has to have noise when he writes.  A show or some music or something going on in the background.  Helps him get into the right frame of mind.  I guess I’m just more easily distracted.

Well I wrapped up the last of my birthday celebrations yesterday after going out to dinner with my dad and Spud.  I’ll say now that this has been a pretty geeky birthday, as far as gifts go.  Which is awesome, mind you.  I bought a ton of yarn with the gift certificate my brother gave me.  Mick got me an AMAZING owl mask from the one and only Miss Monster, AND as if that wasn’t enough, the first volume of Absolute Sandman!  If you haven’t seen these things, well then you must not be a Sandman fan.  And if you’re not a Sandman fan, well, I don’t know if we can be friends.  There’s a couple volumes out that encompass the whole of the original series, plus all sorts of sketches, outtakes (for lack of a better word), unfinished frames, lots of neat little extras.  It’s a beautiful leather-bound book too, no paperback here.  And, knowing how much those suckers cost, I am very appreciative of it! 

On top of that, my parents managed to shock me with their gift: An Anthology of Beowulf Criticism!  I’m sure to most of you that sounds like the most boring thing you could possibly recieve, but dammit I think it’s awesome.  You may have read earlier about my studying Old English, and of course you can’t go through Old English without reading some Beowulf.  Or you could do like me and take an entire semester-long graduate class doing nothing but translating Beowulf.  So for me, this book is effin sweet.  A lot of the pieces in here I’ve read before but haven’t owned copies of.  And it’s got all of the essentials: Blackburn, Tolkien, Kemp Malone, Herbert Wright, Margaret Goldsmith, plus more, eighteen in all.  I look forward to settling down to read them soon.  Because occasionally I feel the need to be all high-falutin and edumacated and stuff.     

On an unrelated note, this kid in a 1956 western is totally doing some sort of insane breakdancing at a hoedown.  I have no idea what’s going on in this movie.

It’s a lot trippier if you watch it with the sound off.  “This kid”, btw, is Russ Tamblyn.  Fuckin Dr. Jacoby!  Dancing his ass off!

Anywho, so that was the end of my very pleasant Birthday 2k10.  And for all that celebrating, I didn’t have a single piece of cake.  How wrong is that?  Very wrong, I say.  Funny how silly little things end up being more important to you than you realize, or want to admit.  Well, aside from having no cake, it was a very pleasant birthday. 

Now that the birthday festivities have ended, it’s back to insane needlework.  I keep meaning to find out when the actual show is, but remember that “easily distracted” thing I was talking about earlier?  Yeah.  More of that.  Market bags are coming, plus the odd tea cozy thrown in here and there because they’re quick and don’t require thinking.  I’ve found a couple new patterns to use with my new yarns that should prove quite awesome. (did you see that bright yellow yarn in the picture?  that’s going to be an amazing lace shawl.)

I’m also trekking along through Dune (still), and still really loving it.  I’ve passed into Part III now, so I’m getting close to the end.  It doesn’t feel like it’s about to end, it feels like there’s so much left to cover.  I’m guessing that means this last 1/3 will go at breakneck speed.  After that, we’ll see how I feel about getting into the next one in the series.  In fact, I’m gonna go do that now.  I’ll see you suckers later!

…and we’re back!  It’s another Sunday come and almost gone, which makes me very sad.  Sundays are often my favorite days, probably because I’m allowed to be lazy for most of the day and not feel bad.  Plus there’s cartoons in the evening and I don’t feel bad for going to bed early. 

As far as Sundays go, it hasn’t been the best, but it’s alright.  While Mick was napping earlier I made myself a big ol’ fire in the fireplace, partly because our house has been unusually cold lately and partly because I like watching things burn.  So now I’m watching it do its thing and thinking about that half a piece of cheesecake in the fridge. 

AND THEN THE CHEESECAKE WAS NO MORE!  Of course leave it to the TV gods to toss up a Jillian Michaels commercial as I’m stuffing my face.  Thanks.  But hey, here’s some free advertising for today:  If you’re ever in the neighborhood of Mopac and Braker, swing through the big shopping center and check out Just Desserts, a divine little pastry shop offering up a bazillion kinds of cheesecake daily, all oh so delicious.  The key lime is amazing, and I’m also a fan of the mandarin orange.  The piece I just scarfed was a traditional turtle, and it was awesome.  So forget the Cheesecake Factory, support local business and eat better cheesecake.  Go get your Just Desserts!  (Also, it’s right across the way from Mighty Fine, and the perfect way to top of a goddamn tasty hamburger.)

Well, in case your wondering, the Todd Snider show last night was AWESOME.  He actually had two opening bands, neither of which I had ever heard of.  First up, The Tricias…I’m normally not one for chick bands, but these gals were amazing.  Part CSNY, part A.M.E Choir, and a few Nick Cave-esque dirges thrown into the mix; these girls are what the Dixie Chicks wish they were.  Check out this video:

Next up was a honky tonk band from Denver, the Great American Taxi.  They were fun, and the old folks were having a blast.  It was a strange hybrid bluegrass jam band, I’m not sure if it was in a good way or not.  But there were plenty of “ladies of a certain age” doing that strange dance that they do…you know the one, where they bounce their knees and point to the band while they’re singing along.  So there was a lot of that, and it went on for a little longer than it should have.  In the words of my very pregnant friend Stephanie in the row behind me, “it wasn’t as good as a taco.”

But then there was Todd, so it was all okay.  He’s a brilliant songwriter, and a hell of a lot of fun to watch.  And it’s not your typical rock show either; with his bare feet and his floppy hat, he’s a modern-day pied piper, and the entire audience hangs on his every word.  People don’t talk, most don’t scream or whistle (except the occasional drunken frat boy), they just sit and listen.  And he’s more than happy to sing and tell stories and play requests.  And people are actually excited when he says he’s going to play a new song!  Crazy, right?  He’s that brilliant.  And you can tell by the humongous stoner grin that he gets that the man is having a great time doing it too. Here’s another video, just for grins:

So that was definitely the highlight of my weekend, week, January, you know.   And I can say that, because tomorrow is February.  Which means only two weeks till my birthday!  And yes, I am happy to still be at an age where birthdays are an exciting thing, not a dreadful thing.  Although now that I’m officially pushing 30, I do get a little apprehentious sometimes.  Don’t tell anybody though. 

In honor of my birthday, here’s a carousel of things you can buy for me!

I started out as a child…

Today I am wearing corduroy pants!

I declare this proudly, exclamation point and all, because I don’t think I’ve ever in my life owned corduroy pants before now.  They’re kind of fun, if for no other reason than that they remind me of an old Bill Cosby joke.

…you got a pair of cordoroy pants on, you turn into a one man band! You know, VOOM-VOOM Flap. VOOM-VOOM Flap. VOOM-VOOM flap.  Except I’m wearing a pair of heels and the stiletto has worn down to the nail, so I’m more like voom-voom click.

And I don’t care who you are or how pretentious you want to be, Bill Cosby was funny back in the day.  And today, I need a good laugh.  Not sure what the deal is, blame it on the rain or Aunt Flo or the futitily of pointless work or the smell of dreams smouldering, I’m just feeling sour.  In rehab they used to make us do an exercise every morning where we’d write down five things we were thankful for; it’s supposed to put you in a positive frame of mind to deal with the little problems of everyday life.  And it works, for the most part.  It does help me to prioritize the things that are “going wrong”, and I can get a better grip on what actually needs to be done and what can stand to just sit and fester for a while longer.

Speaking of sitting and festering, I’m back from lunch and full of Whataburger.  Blaaaaarghmmmmmmnomnom.  I feel like Jabba the Hutt.  Han, ma bukeeOh ho ho ho ho.  And upon my arrival at my desk, I found that I am now an approved Amazon.com Associate!  Why is this exciting?  Well, for you, it means I can put neat little banners and widgets and handy links to products I want to promote or recommend, and you get one stop shopping!  I can tell you how awesome something is, then give you a direct link to purchase it.  Pretty handy, no?  And if you purchase through that link, I get a little tiny bit of kickback.  So you’re paying the same amount and giving less of it to the giant megacorp.  It’s a tiny way to fight the man, but it’s something! 

Wanna see it in action?  Check out Mick’s blog from yesterday for a taste.

Or look!  Here’s a link where you can buy the awesome book I’ve been reading, A Game of Thrones by George RR Martin!

Kinda spiffy, I say.  Enjoy!

(right here)

 

Couldn’t help myself, sorry.  Came across that in my daily perusings of the Cheezburger Network and it made me happy.  Or happier, I should say, as I already have myself a pot of Gyokuro Kin and am rockin the ELO, which is a recipe for instant happiness, if you ask me.  Also on my list of delightful things for today, I ate lunch at a restaurant that serves nothing but grilled cheese sandwiches and soup.  Not just any grilled cheese sandwiches, mind you, fancy schmancy grilled cheese sandwiches!  I had a gruyere/havarti on rye with tomato basil soup, and it was amazing.  I hear they have a pretty rockin mac and cheese too, which I will have to try at a later date.  Because I will be going back, that is for damn sure.  If you’re in town, check it out: Chedd’s in The Triangle (at the intersection of Lamar and Guadalupe); I hear they’re a franchise too, so check their website to see if there’s one near you. 

And in case you’re wondering, yes we went to the gym last night and I had a blast.  Mick, on the other hand, doesn’t seem too sure about the whole thing yet.  But for me, it felt great to get back into the swing of things.  I’ve always enjoyed exercising and it definitely felt good to burn a little.  And, even better, it doesn’t look like I’m too far from where I left off!  At least on the machines, I’m using the same amount of weight I was three years ago without much strain.  Today I’m getting back on the freeweights, even though I’m sure my form has gone to shit and I’ll probably have to start with 5s and 10s.  Only complaint is the place was a bit crowded, but what do you expect at 5:30?  We’ll see if 4:00 does me any better today.

I did start reading A Game of Thrones yesterday while on the treadmill, but I only got about 10 pages into it.  So no news to report there, sorry.  I’m still working my way through Dune, though, and still really loving it despite having fallen asleep while reading the last two nights.  Not indicative of the novel, just of me being exhausted. 

I wasn’t planning on going anywhere serious with this blog today, but something’s been bugging me all day and I just feel like venting before it stews into anger.  I mentioned earlier that I’m a follower of Amanda Palmer on Twitter; I do this because I think she’s interesting, she’s intelligent, and she’s ballsy.  These are all things I admire in people and hope to cultivate in myself.  Now I don’t give two shits about the Golden Globes, but I did catch the photos of her and Neil on the red carpet and have read some rather snarky postings regarding her outfit and conduct.  I believe the word “famewhore” was tossed around.  And I wanted to grab and shake these commenters violently!  There is a difference between a famewhore attitude and a not-giving-a-fuck attitude.  It may be a blurry one, but it’s there.  And I can understand, in these days of realityTV and people being famous simply for being famous, that people are used to the famewhore celebrity thing and the bitches that sport it (Real Housewives? Jersey Shore?).  But (and permit me to speak about a person like I know them even though I really don’t) I gotta say that from everything I’ve read about the woman, mostly from her own mouth, Amanda Palmer does not strike me as a famewhore.  She is fucked up and weird in the best sorts of ways, talented, creative, and quite a lovely creature, and I think she should be appreciated for those qualities.  And what struck me as ironic is that the commenters and such that were crying “famewhore” also kept repeating the phrase “I’ve never heard of this person” and the like.  I guess what I’m getting at is this: I am so glad I’m not famous.  Because I could see myself getting into many similar situations and cast into a similar pool; I guess not giving a damn should preclude me from worrying about what’s written about me in blogs and on postings, but I think that it would irritate me just a little.  I’d probably act along the lines of Felicia Day in her stand against Vanity Fair: a mature, well-written response explaining my side of things and nicely telling you to fuck off with your ignorant self.  And I guess one of the things that really bugs me is that in both cases (Amanda and Felicia), the prime offenders were women!  And rather than being proud of an intelligent ballsy woman doing what she wants and defining her own happiness, they try to tear her down and belittle her accomplishments.  Can you explain that to me?  I’m not saying we should all lock arms and sing kumbaya and have a big estrogen-fest, but why not give some props to a girl who decides to be more than just a pretty face (even though she’s definitely got one of those too, and a pair of legs to boot)?  Is it ignorance?  Jealousy?  I just can’t understand it.  Whatever it is, I think I speak for a great many when I say “Amanda, I got your back.” 

(That’s when I throw down the microphone and do a Diamond Dave leap off my soapbox.)

Oh yeah, and if anyone has some first-hand (or close) knowledge of hoodoo and/or Hatian voodoo, I’m getting ready to kick off a new screenplay while the other one is lost in the quagmire of not-eve-pre-production.  Shoot me an email or something.  There just might be a pie in it for you!

TV Party!

Howdy!  Yeah, that’s right, howdy.  What the hell.  It’s Tuesday.  And I hope it finds you well.  So far the day, for me, has been underwhelming, and so I’m forced to create my own fun.

For starters, I entered an online contest.  For what, you ask?  Only something so incredibly geeky that I’m almost afraid to mention it and add more competition to the pool.  But when I read that The Prop Store of London was giving away an authentic Jaffa staff weapon, I couldn’t not sign up!

kree, motherfucker!

 Cuz that would just look really awesome on my wall.

Hell, who am I kidding, I would run around the house with it and shoot at things.  Like that annoying little toddler across the street who’s always yelling and banging on trash cans. 

And also in the world of geekdom and tv, HBO now has, in the works, a miniseries for Game of Thrones!  That’s right, the George RR Martin book!  Not only is that cool in itself, but it’s also starring two subjects of extreme geek-lust: Jason Momoa and Sean Bean.  After reading that yesterday, I decided to try and pick the book up again and see if I can’t get through the series.  It’s been sitting on my shelf for years now (long enough that I had to sweep off the dust bunnies when I picked it up last night) ,and I keep meaning to get to it and just haven’t.  So I’m taking it with me to the gym to devour while I do my cardio.  Check out this shot from the series:

  

Badassness.  I hope Hyperion will at least look as cool.

Well, wish me luck as I head out to my first day of after-work gym stuff!  I hope I’m as pumped about it tomorrow as I am today!

Evening all!

And what a lovely evening it is.  Today has been infinitely better than the last two days, and I’m hoping this positive trend will continue.  I went to the doctor today for a refill of my crazy pills; he seems to think that as long as I’m still doing ok, no thoughts of suicide or the like, that I can just keep on keepin on.  Which works for me.  Aside from costing me $15 a month, it’s not an inconvenience, and I don’t think it’s supressing me in any way.  I know a lot of people are all anti-medication and I can get that; meds for no reason are bad, I agree.  However!  Some people actually do need to be on meds.  Myself, for instance; let’s compare:

-Depressed, non-medicated Tara: alcoholic, drug addict, couldn’t hold down a job, unstable relationships, self-destructive
-Non-depressed, medicated Tara: steady job, loving husband, 2.5 years sober, friends and family, relatively healthy

A friend of mine has a daughter who is bipolar, which makes her batshit crazy.  There are medications she can take to help control her mood swings and depression and the like, but she refuses to take anything.  Therefore, she’s still batshit crazy, and because of it has lost custody of two of her three children, can’t get or hold a job, and has practically alienated her entire family.  That’s where the anti-medication argument breaks down for me. 

Well that was a little rant, now wasn’t it.  Sorry, didn’t mean to go angry places there.  I wanted to tell you about happy things.  Like, at this very moment, I am burning incense and DVDs.  Not like burning DVDs with fire, but you know what I mean.  And I guess I’m not really burning them anyways, but putting them onto Mick’s fancy little hard drive, WHD or WMD or something like that.  What DVDs, you may ask?  Oh, only FIFTEEN discs of old schoo Doctor Who!  Well, there’s some new stuff in there too, like the last three Christmas Specials, a few Children in Need specials, and some Doctor Who Confidential.  But this collection also contains things like the 1963 unaired pilot, tons of Dalek storylines, “The Five Doctors”, and much much more.  Definitely one of the best Christmas presents in recent memory.  Thanks to one of my awesome English buddies for getting me cool stuff that you can’t find in America.  Double-bonus awesome: he also sent over the TimeOut London with David Tennant on the cover!

Yeah, that one. 

If anyone ever questioned my level of ubergeekitude, you might want to rethink.

And furthermore, if you’d like to revel in ubergeekitude much like myself and are looking for a good read with which to do so, check out the book “Who’s Next: An Unofficial and Unauthorised Guide to Doctor Who”.  Authors Mark Clapham, Eddie Robson, and Jim Smith go through each series and hash out the good, the bad, the strange, and the miniscule.  They use categories like Notable Cast, Other Worlds, The Plan, Scary Monsters, Science/Magic, and Things Fall Apart to tell you what the story is about in the terms of a viewer, not a studio exec or a pitch writer.  They also helpfully include an Availability section for each, which if you’re outside of Britain can be pretty depressing.  And of course, they share their own Verdict on each story, sometimes praiseworthy, usually snarky, but from the POV of a true geek.  I picked up this fun little reference at a Half Price Books a while back and have been using it as a bathroom book.  And now I have many of these stories to watch for myself!  So if you’re a total Whovophile (I just made that up) and like to know everything there is to know, or at least be able to look it up quick, this is a neat thing to have.  And there’s my free sponsorship of the day.  Woohoo free!

OBLIGATORY BEGGING SECTION: Mick and I still have plenty of spots open for advertisers and daily sponsors, but it’s only getting more costly!  So don’t delay!  You can still get a spot for under $20, and that’s cheap as hell for someone to rave about your product for all the world to see.  Can’t beat that with a stick!  We’ll rave about your business, your art, your pets, or even just how awesome you are (cuz you know you are!). 

Ok, begging over.  I think now, whilst I continue to burn things, I’ll be going back to a bit of knitting.  More dishcloths to make, more pictures to take, new things to post on Etsy, blah blah blah.  I’ll leave you with that for the evening.  Take care, little ones!

Ok, before I get into this, I have to show you what I made last night:

it's a cthulu cosy!

 

Probably the most awesome tea cosy you’ll ever see.  And a really easy pattern too, I have a feeling I’ll be crafting quite a few cthulu-themed projects in the future.  Thanks to Arcana Vitae for the adorable chart! 

Right.  So.  I was going to talk about Dune today, because it’s been a part of my life for about two weeks now and I’ve yet to have a good sit-down about it.  Dune is one of those books that I’ve been meaning to read for, oh, like a decade or so, and just never got around to actually picking it up.  So a few weekends ago, Mick and I were looking for a movie to watch, and he graciously left the choice up to me.  After perusing our gigantic collection for a little while, I was thumbing through the David Lynch section and came across the Dune movie.  It seemed exactly what I was in the mood for, and Mick was more than happy to oblige.  And I must say, after the first 10 minutes or so I was already in love with it.  By the end, I adored it.  And in my brain I kept thinking “if you love this, imagine how good the book is!”  Or was that Mick telling me that, I don’t remember.  Anywho, I was spurred.  I waited till the next evening before actually picking the book up and diving in. 

I’m not very far in just yet, but I am having an incredible time with it.  Herbert is a magnificent crafter of characters, and I adore every one of them.  Of course there’s a little disconnect between book and movie that throws me off at times; the brilliant Kyle McLaughlin doesn’t really pass for a 15-year-old, and no matter how many times I read Gurney Halleck described as a fat lump of a man, I can’t help but think of Patrick Stewart.  But tiny deviations aside, I am constantly being blown away by Jessica.  She’s badass!  And I think that’s something that didn’t get as much emphasis in the film as it should have, I’m sure due to time and content constraints.  It happens.  But damn!  She’s just flippin brilliant, and wise beyond that.  And I love the way that all of her savvy, all of her influence and understanding, essentially comes from her ability to read and understand people.  Rather than seeing faceless bureaucracies and swarming populations, she can look at the individuals that make them up and understand the system by its creators and inhabitants.  Which I think is a brilliant way to look at the world.

And of course I have to love the poor tragic Duke.  I can’t help it, I have a terrible weakness for proud, vulnerable, flawed heroes.  I’ve always been fascinated by the character of Theoden mainly because he wasn’t perfect and he did fuck up some, but he was able to overcome in the end and he did the best he could.  He was real, he was human.  The Duke strikes me in much the same way.  He’s not perfect, he gets fatigued and upset, he’s proud, but his fallibility is all the more endearing.  Especially since I know he’s about to be murdered by a close friend.

Which brings up one more thing that I’ve been thinking about…why the hell will no one suspect Yueh??  How is he the one person that Jessica can’t truly see through?  And why would Duke Leo suspect his lover over this guy?  It’s like he’s a jedi or something!  Or maybe because he just sort of blends into the background…he’s reliable, dependent, doesn’t cause trouble or draw attention to himself.  Makes me wonder if I would suspect him if I didn’t already know he was the traitor…those are the questions that keep me up at night. Confound you, Frank Herbert! 

Anyway, I read right up until the scene of the betrayal last night, and then stopped because I wouldn’t have time to finish the whole thing before my nighttime shows came on.  I’m a creature of habit, what can I say. 

I’m also proud to report that I’ve gotten a ton of complements on the cthulu cosy!  Yay!

That’s all for now, I’m off for a delicious Kim Phung lunch with the wonderful Mick.  Toodles!

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