So I’m trying to settle in and get used to living in a new city. Saratoga’s definitely a pretty place, but sometimes I feel like I’ve landed in some racetrack obsessed cult. There are horse statues all over the place and the streets are all named after racing lingo, and people have bumper stickers that say things like “Whinnying is Everything.” Toto, I don’t think we’re in Canada anymore.
So last night I put together some variant of this. It took me five and a half hours. They’re all different pieces that you arrange into a shelving/cabinet unit. Mine has a cupboard, a filing cabinet, and a bunch of shelves. I put each piece together and then organized them into a little unit.
I was so proud of myself. I’ve never built anything before, and even though I wasn’t technically building this, I WAS using screwdrivers and hammering things in place with my fist. I felt very industrious.
Because it’s from Target, it’s kind of shoddy and some things didn’t fit into place properly (particularly the backs of the shelves). I’m pretty sure it’s all gonna collapse in like three months, but for now I am pretty pleased with it.
The first year of college, I put a TV in my dorm room, but Canadians don’t believe in giving university students cable so I only had one channel. I watched a lot of Funniest Home Videos even though I hate it. For the next two years, we got about 15 channels, most of which were crap, on a TV which was located in the coldest room in all of Canada. I mostly only ventured in there to watch America’s Next Top Model, or an especially good episode of Dr. Phil (shut up). Last year, we gave up TV altogether, but I ended up watching more since Sean downloaded lots of great shows for me, and I took advantage of the full episodes on MTV Canada.
However, what I haven’t been watching for the past 4 years are all the great reality shows on channels like Style, Bravo, E!, TLC, HGTV, We and VH1. I am making up for that now. Believe me. I love anything that involves: makeovers (human or home), remodeling, interventions, sassy/gay hosts, blonde chicks having catfights, families with more than 6 children.
Shows I still need to watch: Toddlers and Tiaras, Little Miss Perfect, The Real Housewives of wherever they’re doing it now.
Well, here I am, back in America. I miss Canada. I’ve moved back in with my mom, but I feel like I’ve left home. It hasn’t really sunk in yet that I won’t be seeing my best friends every day anymore. I feel like we should be doing shots and heading out to Stages wearing matching getups tonight. Even though it’s Monday.
I’m excited to get moved in, and my room is pretty fabulous (hello, new flat screen TV, new pink telephone, and walk in closet), but it’s hard to get comfortable when I know I won’t be here long. I hope to move out on my own within a year, but I’d like to make my room as nice as possible in the interim.
Today, I plan on doing lots of unpacking and organizing, while watching Clean House and Cribs for inspiration/motivation. I actually really enjoy this part of the process. Maybe I’ll put up pictures when I’m all done.
I am packing up everything I own today. It’s both heartbreaking and comforting to see all your stuff packed away into piles of boxes. I can’t decide if it’s materialism or just sentimentality that makes me so attached to the things I own. I just know that I’m terrified of leaving things behind.
Can we talk about this? I don’t know why more people don’t seem to be appalled by this glaring problem with the film and television industries. It’s outrageous.
"A quick recap, for those unfamiliar with it, of the Bechdel rule (or Bechdel Test)
A film (or television show) should have:
At least two female characters
Who talk to each other
About something other than a man
You can find much more about the rule, and the great comic strip it orginated in, Dykes to Watch Out For, elsewhere on the web. I mention it only as a relevant jumping off point to something I have been thinking about lately - that where television and film truly need to progress in terms of the portrayal of women is not in the quantity of roles but in the quality of them. The Bechdel rule is useful, and I highly encourage you to employ it regularly and tell others about it as well, but only up to a point, and only because the landscape we use it in is so devoid of realistic portrayals of women, and so reliant on cliched female characters that are mainly little more than paper-machie wisps of real individuals, that the easiest way to point out its hollowness is to simply tally up its many failures.”
Old Navy is definitely hit or miss for me. They make some really ugly junk (Eva and I bemoan their faux vintage tees), but I also have a lot of great pieces from there that no one ever believes are from Old Navy. Anyway, I bought the best, super versatile v-neck short sleeved t-shirts there the other day. They were $10 (canadian) each and they are completely ideal. They’re not too short or boxy, the material is really light and comfortable, the sleeves come down to a proper length that flatters the upper arm, and the neckline is sufficiently low (I hate shirts that are cut too high). I bought them in grey, white, and a green and white stripe, but I kind of want to buy more. Maybe I’ll see if they’re cheaper at home next week.
So, I went to see Crank 2: High Voltage (having never seen Crank 1) and I didn’t like it, because as it turns out, I’m not a 14 year old boy. Go figure. Anyway, my favorite thing about it were the shots of characters’ faces against the over saturated, turquoise skies, just before they killed someone, or were about to be killed (because that’s pretty much all anyone did).
I was also kind of pleased with how aptly allegorical the plot seemed. It’s a movie about a man who simply cannot keep his heart racing fast enough. He is constantly electrocuting himself (or having sex, because that’s basically the same thing in this movie) just to keep his (artificial) heart working. I couldn’t help but wonder if the target demographic wasn’t relating a little too closely to the plight of the protagonist. It’s a movie aimed at teenage boys (or men with the mentality of teenage boys) who have grown up in a culture of video games and pornography and action films that are edited faster and faster, whose tolerance for violence and exposure to sex are exorbitant, and who, perhaps, are finding that they are no longer excited by anything. Maybe an electric shock to the system is the last resort for a generation that’s gone through mass desensitization.
And Though She Feels As If She's In a Play, She Is Anyway
For the past few days I’ve had this feeling like I’m about to go on stage to star in a play, but I’ve forgotten my lines. It’s like I have butterflies in my stomach all the time, but it’s not exciting. The feeling has intensified to the point that it’s hard to leave my apartment without panicking that I’m forgetting something. I can’t fall asleep at night without gasping sharply a few times. I have stomach aches all the time. My heart won’t stop pounding.
I’m sure it has something to do with the fact that I’m nervous about what I’m going to do next. It’s the first time in my life that the next step hasn’t been planned out for me. I know that a certain amount of anxiety is normal, and probably even healthy, for someone in my situation. I’m just not sure where I’m supposed to draw that line.