The Girl in Black

Se necesita una poca de gracia.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

So, a little while back we sold some lights to Yakov Smirnoff in Branson, MO to light the outside of his theater. They were such a hit that apparently everyone in Branson wanted them. Which gave me this awesome idea... Posted by Hello

Hee hee.  Posted by Hello

My backpack's got jets!

How cool am I? I'm Boba Fett cool, that's how cool I am. Nevermind where I got this information, I just know it's true. (Okay okay, my super special boy told me. Tee hee. I love geeky compliments.)

Speaking of geeky, I got to see Revenge of the Sith this weekend. Not bad, if you look past the wooden performances from most of the actors. My brother and I looked at each other after it was all over and agreed that Lucas really just can't direct people. What's the first rule of storytelling? Show people, don't just tell them, dammit!

But oh well.

In other news, I've really been wanting to make my own music again lately. I felt inspired after I rediscovered the song I had written with a friend a few years ago... All I need now is a keyboard, a microphone, and a music studio in my apartment. But I am promised a copy of Fruity Loops, which will have to suffice for the moment...

Now the only thing I need to make my life complete is a time machine to make it Friday, so that I might be speeding on an airplane to my lover's waiting arms. (Better yet, skip the plane trip and just fast forward to the lover's arms part...)

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Dear Goddess please hear my prayer...

I found this out from Drew, and all I ask of you now is... Please please please make this movie not suck.

Every so often somebody creates something amazingly beautiful and wonderful and special that will last forever and ever and ever in the hearts and minds of all it has touched. I've seen the documentary, the amount of love and creativity that went into the original Dark Crystal movie is amazing. Talk about a meeting of minds.

And now... They want to make a sequel now!? I am relieved that a lot of the original people who worked on it are being brought back on board, but I wonder how much time and age have changed things? (And yet part of me is chiding myself for my lack of faith in Brian Froud. Tsk tsk.) Not only that, the marketingspeak that I read in the little press release is disturbing to me.
"...they want to work to bring back many of their existing productions and franchises." What!? That's all this was to them, a product? A franchise? To make a cartoon series and a videogame out of??

No no no no. This doesn't add up at all.

To me, The Dark Crystal has always been one of those rare treasures of sheer artistry, done for it's own sake. But as I write this I am suddenly remembering all of the marketing they did and products they made for the 1982 release. Just look on eBay, it's all there. (And Drew owns most of it. I've seen his collection, it's impressive.) So I suppose this was really part of their initial intention all along. *sigh*

Is there not one pure, beautiful, untouched thing in this world? I suppose not. I often find myself thinking of ways to market and sell some of my own existing ideas. The Force may be strong within me, but the Dark Side is oh so tempting. How can I hold others to standards I can barely keep myself? And we all hopefully know now that there is no shame in an artist wanting to make a living with their talents. But still...

The only peaceful thought I have of this is that actually, behind all the marketing glitz and sales promotions, the good things really do shine through on their own. And I can see it, and other people can see it. So I guess it's really all okay.

Exit music: "Float On" - Modest Mouse

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Fun Linkage

Sometimes Blogger gets distracting. They have this little "blogs of note" list in the dashboard, and every now and again I can't help clicking on some of them. They have the some of the coolest names and themes! So for all you non-Blogger users (and the ones who just don't pay attention), here are some distractions...

The Four Ninja Foodgroups (Eggroll, Bagel, Cookie, Vengeance)

Comments: Kinda interesting to read, but really just kinda odd. It took me a minute to realize that there are four distinct individuals posting, and the marsupial definitely threw me. I am also amused that there is a 25-year-old Libran Goat named Muffin posting, whose curtains apparently do not match his drapes. Hmm...

The Darth Side (does this need an explanation?)

Comments: I only read the first (last?) post, but it is very very well written, and suddenly I am quite excited to attempt to go see Episode III tomorrow...

Gmail is pretty distracting too. At the top of my inbox I get little links to news items, and every so often it's news of the weird:

I wanna be the Piano Man...

Tattooing is now mainstream? How ironic.

Random stuff:

My favorite Hedonism Bot quote: "An Opera about a man in love with a woman? How delicious!" No, I don't know if I'm quoting it accurately, but the episode is called "The Devil's Hands are Idle Playthings."

"I apologize for nothing!" - Hedonism Bot (again) Yeah, you kinda had to be there for that one...

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Just for the record

I still have my Kerry '04 bumper sticker on my car. And my Howard Dean sticker too.

I only had the Kerry sticker leading up to the election, but someone decided they knew better than me about a week afterwards and peeled it off, leaving it in a crumpled heap by my back tire. What else could I do but put another one right back up? My then boyfriend had tons of extras, plus a few leftover Dean stickers. So up they both went.

And up they will stay until I see the last "W" sticker peeled off of the SUV's, minivans, and other vehicles about town.

I'm just sayin...

Monday, May 16, 2005

Just another Manic Monday...

But I'm alright. No really!

I actually got some much needed rest this weekend (sleep doesn't help when there are things going on in the back of your head), and as a result I put together my aparmtent a little more. Hooray! (You still can only sit on about half of the couch, but who will really use the other half anyway?)

Of course, today I have to make it through all of work without a single cigarette (I cheated on Friday and snuck out at lunch). I mean it, no smoking at work, or in my car (except for a very limited amount on the commute to and from). If I can achieve that goal then I will feel that I have made good progress for the time being.

Of course, for some reason, whenever I am making a point not to smoke, and then I have food, I end up feeling really fat. Which causes me to panic, and sometimes this panic leads to even more food consumption. This could seriously put a dent in my zen-like outlook on things. Hmm...

And my mother emailed me today. Goddess love her, (because I do) but I can always tell when she's trying to find out things I don't want to tell her. Sometimes it's a very uncomfortable feeling, like she's pushing me, or digging into me or something. I don't think she realizes it feels quite like that to me, but when I'm in a mood to be left alone it's just plain old annoying.

And I've really been in a mood to be left alone lately.

"Tell me a story about your new boy," she says, which instantly causes my mind to draw a blank. A story? Like what kind? Does it have to involve me, or can it just be something he's told me? I don't know, the possibilities are infinite and unreachable at the same time. Plus there are just things that I don't think my mother really wants me to share, as they'd definitely be going into TMI territory. (Do you really want to know what kinds of kinky things your daughter is doing?)

But it's more than just keeping mum about the boy. Lots of things are going on that I just don't want to say. Sometimes things are just better left in my head, divulged only to the most carefully selected confidantes. Mostly because knowledge is power, and when other people know what you know, they have power over you.

...Okay, that sounds really cryptic. But it's true to an extent. Do you know how many times I've revealed some flight of fancy in my head, only to have it be accidentally crushed underfoot by an obtuse mind? Plus there's the nagging thought that, although my friends seem to love me dearly, they think I'm quite the flake. There's no need to reinforce that, is there?

*sigh* I know, excuses excuses. And my mom doesn't think I'm a flake. (And I know my friends don't care.) But come on! She's my mom! She's the only woman in the world who can command me to do something, and half the time I actually do it. (The other half of the time I rebel against it, but definitely feel guilty for doing so.) Despite what she says, that yes I am a grown woman with my own life, I still feel this pull to seek out her approval sometimes. I don't think this is unique to me, but it's frustrating as hell.

Which is why I just want to be left alone.

But I love her, and she deserves to hear something directly from me about my life rather than secondhand. So what will I tell her about my boy? *dreamy sigh* He does have the most beautiful eyes...

Friday, May 13, 2005

Okay okay! Baby steps!

So, um, yeah. I was a little overambitious in announcing my plans to quit smoking. I met up with a smoker friend to go see Kung Fu Hustle (such an awesome flick. Go see it!), and I so caved.

He was very kind and bummed me smokes throughout the evening, and then I decided to make my goal of the moment be to not smoke during the day (at work). Which does bug me, because I start out innocent enough with a cigarette here, and then another there, and then before I know it I'm wanting smoke breaks every hour or something. Not very conducive to a productive workplace environment. I mean, I don't care, because I am slack, but I think my employers would care. Plus, the accounting girl commented yesterday on it already. "Are you stressing? You've been smoking a lot more lately."

Of course, I have been stressing, but I didn't really feel like going into it. Fortunately I was able to bring up the "I'm trying to quit" line of dialogue, so it was all good. And I really do intend on quitting in the long run. I just think it'll work better if I take it a little bit at a time.

Oh, and thanks go out, by the way, to all the wonderful boys who have been telling me that I didn't really need to lose the weight/have always been attractive. You are all doing wonders for my self esteem. If only clothing stores would be so accomodating...

Speaking of weight loss, my ex is completely smitten with a new girl. He's very cute about it, and I'm really hoping that things work out. From what he says it sounds like she's exactly his type.

The flip side of this is that she seems to be all of the things that he wanted from me that I never was. This makes me sad, and I can't quite put my finger on why yet, or what I can do about it. I guess it's just the consequence of spending so long with someone. Of course, it hasn't exactly made him feel entirely warm and fuzzy that I have a new boy myself (that I get to go visit for Memorial Day weekend. Yay!).

All things heal with time I suppose. At least I'm not so angry and bitter about it anymore. We even had a nice talk the other day, and seemed to say some things to each other that needed to be said, including apologies on my part. (Have I mentioned this already?) I feel a lot better about talking to him now too, which is good. Progress...

...Goddess I want a cigarette.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

So yeah, like, no big hurrahs or anything...

...but I'm going to try to quit smoking again.

Why? Oh, I'm not sure exactly. Why not? Originally I was going to start out this post with some humorous, witty dialogue such as:

So I said to myself, "Self" I said "you sure seem to be spending a lot of money on cigarettes."

"Why yes, yes I do," I replied back.

I continued on. "Perhaps this isn't the wisest course of action, seeing as there are all other sorts of wonderful things you can get and do with that money."

I pondered it for a moment. "Well yes, I suppose that's true..."

And the conversation could go on and on ad nauseum if I wanted it to. But I don't really want it to. And the money isn't really the reason either. It's more of a side-effect. No, really I think it's just a really random, silly thing for me to do. Why? Seriously, why not? Why not start? Why not stop? Ideally I'd like to be a social smoker, causally gesturing with lit cigarettes in clubs, bars, and coffeehouses, taking on this aspect to my personality only when I feel like it. (And there is also the fact that my new boy is quite handy with a zippo, a talent that I'd hate to squander so soon.)

But for now, for today, no smoking. Just the Nicorette gum. It's really not so bad, because you're not supposed to really chew it (so you don't taste it all that much, but the taste isn't that nasty to begin with IMO), and it does help for a little while. Thanks again to my ex, who not only left behind that first pack that helped get me back in the habit, but who also left behind the means to quit in the form of the Nicorette gum he barely used. (Why he felt the need to try to be so cold turkey about it I'll never know. Did he think he would appear weak if he used such a crutch? Of course he started popping the Wellbutrin as soon as he could... Ah, memories...)

And of course, all sorts of thoughts and fears are running through my head, but a lot of it is "what if I just substitute junk food for smoking again?" I don't really want to do that. It doesn't matter whether it's chemical or mental or what have you, addictions are only a means of hiding yourself from the world (hell, it I'm sure you could even be addicted to ikebana if you wanted to be). You really have to do some self analysis to notice this, because the shifts are subtle at first, so you don't think about it until you are perhaps in the thick of your new self and you don't even know how you got there. But I've definitely noticed the difference.

Which leads me to ask myself (and I may have posed this question to the audience before) if, for most of my life, behind the t.v. watching, the book reading, the ice-cream eating, the smoking, I was ever even really "there" at all?

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Poking my nose out of my hidey-hole

I sometimes wonder how many people are actually checking my blog every day. Probably not many. But for those of you who do miss a daily posting from me, I apologize. My attentions have been focused elsewhere at the moment, and although I have been making a point of being more openly Pagan, there are some things it's still best not to talk about.

Anywho, visiting my grandparents was quite civil, especially since I ignored the little gibes my grandma threw out every now and again. She gave me some jewelry, and although I really don't wear gold (and I get the feeling that even if I told her this she would still think gold is the better metal), I thought it was sweet. She does think of me, and she does care in her way. Perhaps that's enough for now.

I even got to bum around my childhood neighborhood with my brother and his girlfriend. We scoped out our old street, drove past several former schools, took a long walk on the beach of our youth, and pretty much just had a good time. So much has changed, and yet so much has remained the same. It was the experience I had wanted to have with my ex, but he was never inclined to do so, he always just wanted to go back home. Just another thing to be sad about for a spell I suppose.

And, of course, now that my finances are getting back into shape, I had to make my regular pilgrimage to Lush. I have become an ideal marketing statistic, and I couldn't be happier. I love this company, both because their products are simply amazing and because of the way they sell me things. Case in point, I make a bee line for my favorite conditioner, and one of the girls working there walks up to me and starts talking to me about how awesome it is as she uses it herself, and then starts telling me about how awesome the shampoo she uses is.

That's the thing, all of these girls use and love the products they sell. But not every single product, and not always the most expensive products either. They each have their own honest opinions, based on honest experiences, and all they have to do is share them with you. How easy of a sales position is that? For a brief moment, you're not being sold on a product, you're making a connection with a friendly person of similar interests. The marketing strategy practically writes itself. Would that all retail experiences could be so honest and trustworthy. (And yes, I'll bet these girls get commissions and are actually very good at what they do. I am not that naive, but I do love being sold to when I want to be.)

So I spent more money than I planned, but oh my hair smells so good!

Friday, May 06, 2005

Tomorrow I go to Ormond Beach...

It's not exactly over the river and through the woods, but yes, I go to my Grandma's house tomorrow for Mother's Day. This should be interesting.

Yes, I know it's "interesting", but how can I put it in perspective for those who might not know? When my father (these are his parents we will be seeing) asked my brother and I to join them all, he used the incentive of "it's a free meal" to try to persuade us. That's how "interesting" things can get.

Not that I don't love my grandparents on some level, but I prefer that level to be at a somewhat safe distance. Our ability to communicate and understand each other is such a strained thing. Past any anger I may hold towards them, mostly they just make me sad. They isolate themselves from the rest of the world, and from us. My father cares for them both deeply, and wants to help them (their health is not what it used to be), but still they push him away.

What really gets to me is this past Christmas, they went through a lot of trouble to go shopping for gifts, even braving the mall during the holiday season. They meant so well, but so many of their gifts were off center. My mother (and my ex, has he was there) says that it really is the thought that counted, and I know this somehow. I had thought perhaps my guilt and sadness stemmed from selfishness, but upon reflection it's really that their giving makes the lack of relationship with them all the more poignant to me. I don't need things from them. I never wanted things, just them. And to know that we're not close, and probably never will be, breaks my heart.

And then there's the fact that they listen to Rush Limbaugh religiously... *sigh* At least my wonderfully, antagonistically liberal ex-boyfriend won't be there to incite an argument again, for the sake of everyone else but me. (Sorry honey, but I think that was one of the more amusing Thanksgivings I've spent with them. I really appreciated it, and I always will.)

In the immortal words of Kurt Vonnegut: "So it goes."

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

A daring proposal

I was looking at jewelry online the other day, as I am wont to do (I do so have a sweet tooth for pretty things), and randomly decided to look at diamonds. (Blue Nile makes them look absolutely gorgeous. Mad props to them on their creative and copy, from a purely professional standpoint.) After filtering out all of the "Every woman needs a diamond" crap to get to the sparklies, I had a bold idea.

Most jewelry companies' bread and butter is engagement and wedding rings. People who normally can't afford to spend ridiculous amounts of money, or just need an excuse to do so, will buy a fancy engagement ring for their sweetheart. Not only this, but a lot more of a jewelry store's marketing message is simply that "a diamond is the ultimate gift for a lady." How else could a man be more macho than by going out and plunking down his hard earned wages on a special trinket for his beloved? You almost never see women being targeted to buy expensive jewelry for themselves. They're mostly targeted to think that this is something they really want, and that their man should buy it for them. The perfect romantic gift.

So what if all of the women of the world said "fuck you" to conventional thought and went out and bought their own diamond? Or one even better, what if every woman in the world bought herself an engagement ring, and proclaimed herself betrothed to none but herself? It would be a stunning breakthrough in independent thinking, every woman married to herself.

Unfortunately, it would still put a lot of money into the hands of the master manipulators themselves, perhaps ultimately teaching no one any lessons at all. Oh! But the idea behind it! The statement against social convention!

Perhaps someday I shall.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Being a part of popular culture...

So yes, every single person I know loves Family Guy, and because of this I have given up ranting about it so. I even went to my brother's apartment to watch the premiere.

Don't get me wrong, some of the jokes are quite funny, the show is well animated and well written, I just have issues with a few things that other people don't really seem to notice or care about.

Anyway, it was a decent episode. Not their best, but a good comeback. And it was very amusing to spot all of the liberal touches in the background. (Brian, the dog, was reading "Dude, Where's My Country?" by Michael Moore, and the family's car had a "Kucinich '04" bumper sticker on it. These are not the trappings of a well balanced Democrat, these are the markings of the way to the left liberals, and it makes me wonder how much of it is them just trying to push the envelope on the most Republican station I know, Fox? Hmm...)

Best joke of the evening IMO was the G.I. Joe moment. There is not a person out there in my generation who will not hear the phrase "Now we know!" and not automatically think/reply in response "And knowing is half the battle!" (See? You were thinking it before you even read that I had typed it. I'll bet you even have the voices singing "G.I. Joooe" in your head right now.)

And of course, discussing this later with my special boy prompted further delving into our respective childhoods, where I discovered some geek cred long dormant. How could I ever forget my youthful days playing games on my dad's Amiga (Commodore 64) playing such awesome games as Bubble Ghost and Marble Madness? I even beat both of them, and well before the NES versions came out (which, out of some early form of pretention I suppose, I had thought were inferior). How we even got these games I don't know, but I recall so many moments of frustration, anticipation, triumph (oooh, my face would turn as red as that little ghost's when my bubbles popped). Good times, definitely good times.

And somedays I wish I could still group all of those little lemmings into one spot and blow them to smithereens. Hey, maybe I still can...
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