12.12.2006

The Wheel

There are now three, possibly four, instances of me mishearing a lyric from a song, and preferring that misheard one.

Instance #1 "Yellow" by Coldplay
Actual lyric:"For you I'd bleed myself dry"
What I heard: "For you I'd be myself [I don't know what]"
Actually, when I think about it, I think this was more of trying to recall the lyric and being incorrect, rather than actually mishearing it. Either way, "for you I'd be myself" is a really cool line and should be used somewhere.

Instance #2 "Never Is A Promise" by Fiona Apple
Actual lyric: "You'll say you'd never let me fall from hopes so high"
What I heard: "You'll say you'd never let me fall from heights so high"
The meaning of the actual lyric is superior, but I like the sound of mine.

Instance #3 "Tonight, Tonight" by Smashing Pumpkins
Actual lyric: "Believe in me as I believe in you"
What I heard: "Believe in me as I'm leaving you"
Undoubtedly, my version is better, albeit much darker. But I still stand by the belief that bittersweet is one of the best emotions out there.

Instance #4 "We Don't Need Another Hero"
Actual lyrics: "Give it all or nothing"
What I heard: "Is it all or nothing?"
Now, the judges are still out on this one. All the lyrics sites on the web claim the first version, but it really sounds like what I heard. And what I heard is much better. Less of a cliche, and once again darker, which, especially in art, tends to equal better.

12.01.2006

Skating

This was on a friend's blog and I thought it interesting. And maybe it'll make me feel more bookish.
1. One book that changed your life: I was just thinking about this the other day. I don't have a book that changed my life. I don't have any single work of art/experience/what have you that has altered my being. Sometimes I wonder if I'm missing out on anything, but then I know that I'm not (kind of a long explanation).
2. One book that you've read more than once: The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin
3. One book that you'd want on a desert island: Hmm....probably a toss-up between an Archie digest magazine (preferrably a Jughead Double Digest, possibly No. 10) and House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski
4. One book that made you laugh: Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs by Chuck Klosterman
5. One book that made you cry: Maus by Art Spiegelman
6. One book that you wish had been written: The Great Gatsby without a deceiving title--where Gatsby is the center character and is a charming, dashing rogue involved in the underground world of speakeasies and other fun 1920s gadabouts
7. One book that you wish had never been written: The Bible :) Actually, I don't know. I just ignore books that I don't like generally.
8. One book that you're currently reading: With the end of the semester, I'm only reading plays, criticism, and student's papers. But I plan on starting on David Sedaris' Holidays on Ice when I'm done with this.
9. One book that you've been meaning to read: Well, I have to read Heart of Darkness over break. I think the first non-school-related book I'll read will be The Fifty Year Sword by Mark Z. Danielewski.

11.29.2006

A Post About Boobs

Ah, diversion from what I need to be doing right now. Lately I have been comparing myself to celebrities in terms of breast size. And it tends to make me very happy, since I have never been able to stack up, as they say, before, and as I'm still in the stage of finding my breast size a novelty. So, I was looking up some of these a minute ago, and for some reason was saddened to discover that Christina Aguilera got implants. Judging the evidence, I'm pretty sure that I knew this already, but wouldn't admit it to myself. I'm not sure why this news disappointed me considering a) I'm not a big fan of her work, b) people can do whatever they want to their breasts, c) discovering that people with 'ideal' boobs have implants should make me more secure and therefore glad. So, I thought I'd compile a bit of a list of where I'm at in the ranks of celebrities' (reported) breast size, leaving out the fact that it's a bit skewed since most of these women are much thinner than I am. For a small sample, I'm using DeansPlanet.com for my sizing. I suspect that some of these are inaccurate, but I trust the good people at DeansPlanet to report honestly, and boost my ego.

Bigger than me:
Dolly Parton
Raquel Welch

Same size:
Christina Ricci
Elizabeth Hurley
Halle Berry
Jennifer Love Hewitt
Uma Thurman
Salma Hayek

Slightly less, possibly about same size:
Britney Spears
Demi Moore
Madonna
Marilyn Monroe
Mariah Carey
Tyra Banks

Smaller than me:
Cameron Diaz
Cindy Crawford

11.14.2006

Los Angeles, I'm Yours


So, it's been a while. I've been fairly busy, what with all the procrastinating I have to do. But, the most important and landmark event that has occurred since our last engagement, dear reader, was truly phenomenal and something that has still not been truly understood by my brain. I...met...Colin...Meloy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Can you believe it? I can't. A couple of months ago, I met Ben Gibbard, which was also very surreal and fantastic, but I didn't say anything to him other than getting his autograph. My harem isn't ranked, per se, but I think Colin Meloy is on the top of the pile, so it's especially extraordinary. But, from the beginning....
Saturday, November 11th: Chris and I drove to the city fairly early, arriving at the Riviera Theatre circa 11:30am. We began to walk around the building to see where the line began, if there was a tour bus anywhere, etc. and passed a man and woman on our way. I looked at the man and thought he looked familiar, and then realized that it was Chris Funk, the guitar player extraordinaire. As we passed them, I called out "Chris" and he turned around. I had him sign my copy of God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater and wished him a good show. He then went to the Borders across the street. Thinking that perhaps other Decemberists were looking at books, Chris and I scoured the bookstore in search of the so-far-elusive Mr. Meloy. No luck. Chris bought a cup of coffee from the cafe, and I asked the barista there if there were any book or record stores around the area, ones that might catch the fancy of a rockstar, perhaps. He pointed the way to one down the street called Shake, Rattle, and Read. Chris and I trekked over, and on our way came upon Jenny Conlee, keyboardist extraordinaire who was very friendly and mentioned that a friend of hers was once in a band called God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater. Filled with more hope, we roamed the small bookstore, but alas, no Colin there either. I did buy a copy of John Steinbeck's The Short Reign of Pippin IV, and chatted with the owner. He knew the Decemberists and I told him that he should give me a sign if Colin Meloy came in after we left. We then went back to the front of the Riviera to wait in line. Good thing too, since three college students came by shortly to also wait in line. After standing there for a few minutes, who should walk by on the sidewalk but the top member of my harem, Colin Meloy!!! It was very disorienting, but I tried to maintain my cool, suave veneer. I smiled and waved and then walked up to him and said hello. He signed my book, surprised at our early arrival at the theater, and noticed that I had already seen two of his bandmates. I wanted to ask a question, both out of curiosity and a need to make the conversation longer, and so asked him about the version of The Crane Wife that he read, since I noticed a discrepancy between his lyrics and my copy of the book. I wanted this question to seem smart and astute and interesting and impressive, though immediatly after asking, I felt it was none of these things. He answered that there are several discrepancies between the numerous translations of the book. He then walked down to Borders. After jumping up and down for awhile, Chris mentioned that he could take a picture of me and Colin on his phone when he would come back to the theatre. I was conflicted between wanting a picture and the possibility of spending more time with Colin Meloy (in person!!!) and coming off as a bothersome fan. Colin came back a little while later, walking with Jenny, and Chris took two pictures of the three of us, one with Colin's arm around me!! I wish I could remember what it was like to stand next to Colin Meloy with his arm around me better, but it's all a bit of a haze, what with the shock and disbelief. I told him about Shake, Rattle, and Read and he thanked me for the recommendation. Fast forward six or seven very cold hours, and Chris, my friend Dave, and I were standing in the front row, center stage, thoroughly enjoying a wonderful concert. The whole band stayed back from the edge of the stage the whole time, but Colin would come up every now and again to the loud roar of the crowd. At one point, he straddled the edge of the stage and the barrier that stood a couple of feet from it, his foot mere inches away from me. Oh, it was fantastic. This meeting has yet to fully sink in to my consciousness, and I don't know if it ever will. It's very strange. I've watched, read, and listened to everything from and/or about Colin Meloy that I can find, so part of me feels like I know him, yet it was made very obvious to me on Saturday that I don't. It's very odd to reconcile. So, goal #1 of meeting Colin Meloy, check. Goal #2: befriending Colin Meloy and seeing him often, soon, my friends, soon. So....anyone want to move to Portland?

10.17.2006

Dear Mr. Supercomputer

My tinkering with a friend's song/poem that I wrote as a poem:

staring down the stairs
at a door
through which
you'll appear.
soon enough, there'll be
a return.

staring down the lie
that floats around still
but as a whisper.
soon enough, I'll
only hear what I can see.

though I wish it did
and thought it could,
this trick can't make
anything disappear.

staring down the stairway
I'm not really waiting,
the most I can expect
is a specter.

staring down the lights
that line the corridor
everything is haloed.
soon enough, I'll
be blind in the dark.

though I wanted it to
and willed it so,
though I heard it could
and knew it must,
this door can't
open or close.

10.09.2006

Power to the People

Happy Birthday John and Sean!!!!!!!

I am now working at Barnes and Noble in the cafe, which makes me miss my old Starbucks store and my old manager. Sigh. Oh well, it's money, which I need a lot of. Speaking of making money, I received $30 this weekend to judge three rounds of debate, which was interesting. I saw some good debates, but mostly very bad ones. But, it turns out that if the UN is given one trillion dollars, it can solve all the world's problems. So that's a relief. I'm trying to manage stress and time better which means that I'm trying to not worry so much about my two papers that are due next week that I haven't started on and trying to be confident that I can write both of them fairly well and hopefully finish them before the day they are due. Here's hoping.

10.05.2006

The Perfect Crime #2

Happy Birthday Colin and Carson!!!!!!

This will be a rather short post. All I really want to say is holy jesus The Crane Wife is so fantastic!! It's so very good that it hurts so very much. Ah. Without a doubt The Decemberists are my second favorite band, which is saying quite a bit since they are only below The Beatles. I am counting the days and nights until November 11th.

9.26.2006

Something Of An End

At the Museum
we walk looking
at artifacts of
your love lost,
stop in front of
a canvas
spanning the wall
'Burn the Ships
in the Harbor'
your hand presses
mine and we
say innocuous things
to keep our feet moving.
Out of the room, you
tell me you misheard
a lyric and prefer it
that way.
"Don't let me fall
from heights so high,"
you whisper.
There's an exhibit
for Georges Seurat
around the corner,
but you want to
make your way
closer to ground level.
I misheard a lyric, too.
"For you I'd be myself,"
I whisper back.


With John posting all the concerts he'd been to, I thought I would as well with as much information as I can recall and in no particular order, really.
1. Chicago and The Beach Boys Summer 1987 (?) possibly in Tinley Park
2. Stevie Nicks May30, 1998 New World Music Theatre, Tinley Park
3. Styx and REO Speedwagon Summer 2000 IL State Fair
4. Oldies Show (which included Tommy Roe, Billy J. Kramer, Gary Lewis, many more) Summer 2000 IL State Fair
5. Styx and REO Speedwagon U of I campus
6. Three Dog Night Sangamon County Fair
7. The Turtles, Gary Puckett, and the Grass Roots EIU campus
8. Chicago IL State Fair
9. Gary Lewis, the Boxtops, and Blood, Sweat, and Tears St. Louis
10. Dark Star Orchestra Peoria
11. Elton John and Billy Joel April 4 2003 Savvis Center St. Louis
12. Paul McCartney April 11 2002 United Center Chicago
13. Rufus Wainwright Spring 2004 Pageant St. Louis
14. Old 97s, They Might Be Giants, Counting Crows Taste of Chicago 2003 (?)
15. The Decemberists October 18 2005 Metro Chicago
16. Colin Meloy January 23 2006 Park West Chicago
17. Belle & Sebastian March 11 2006 Riviera Theatre Chicago
18. Franz Ferdinand and Death Cab for Cutie April 19 2006 Aragon Ballroom Chicago
19. Mates of State, Spoon, and Death Cab for Cutie August 12 2006 Greek Theatre Berkeley
20. Jethro Tull, opening act Guy Davis Murat Theatre Indianapolis Summer 2004
21. Revenge of the Bookeaters August 24 2006 Park West Chicago
22. No Doubt Verizon Arena Indianapolis Summer 2004
23. Sufjan Stevens, opening act My Brightest Diamond September 23 2006 Murat Egyptian Room Indianapolis
24. Kelly Joe Phelps Illinois College campus
25. Of Montreal Fall 2005 House Cafe Dekalb

I think that's about all.

9.24.2006

Keep Fallin'

My real complaint about grad school by Jill
For a while now, more specifically for the past year and a month or two, I've been thinking about and trying to articulate my various opinions about graduate school, specifically the Masters program in Film and Literature at Northern Illinois University. I've often bounced back and forth between feeling utterly hopeless as a grad student--that I don't belong here, that this is not what I want to do, that I'm a tourist and will be found out shortly, that I am a complete outsider in the world of academia, and feeling alright with everything and that I eventually will become a professor and will love doing it. One of the more important aspects of my inner-debate that I keep coming back to and am thinking about currently is the writing of academic papers. I am able to write very formal papers, but seldom willing to do so. I hate. Let me repeat, I really utterly depside, detest, abhor, and hate, fucking hate writing formal papers. Funny that I'm a grad student in English, you say. When I'm allowed to be somewhat informal, I feel better about writing essays. Needless to say, I have found many opportunities to write in a style that suits me throughout my academic career. I am in a course this semester that looks to be quite the opposite, so I am very much looking forward to writing a paper for that professor. Anyway, formality/informality aside, I have almost always looked at papers as simply something assigned to me. There have been some occasions where I actually wanted to write a paper, where I felt I had something to say and something to contribute to the pile of literary interpretation, but the ratio of these times to times I have had to write a paper is something like 1:10. I think my biggest (personal) issue with graduate school as a system (and I'm speaking very loosely here since all I am basing it on is my personal experience in my particular field in my particular part of the humanities in my particular university) is the writing of papers. In my ideal version of grad school that was in my head, I pictured a lot of reading and discussion. I pictured actually becoming a Master in the field in which one was studying. Devoting two to three years to really get to know your shit. To read as much as possible what's been written for and about your field of study, and to talk about it with learned people and other pupils eager to gain this knowledge. That by the time you were done, you could go to a cocktail party, and someone could ask you about post-modernism (yay for inside jokes), and you could speak knowledgably for a good amount of time without ever resorting to pulling things out of your ass. I'm alright with being tested about knowledge at the end, I'm alright with writing a thesis on something specific that you spend a lot of time on, I'm not alright with writing term papers simply because the professor can't think of a more original way to track how much you've learned and worked over the course of a semester. And let me pause here to reiterate that I'm simply writing about my opinion and experience. I'm more than willing to concede that I'm alone in my complaint here because maybe I'm just very lazy (which I am) and a slow reader (which I am) and like to complain about things (which I do) and perhaps need to always be in the position of railing against the norm around me (which is quite possible). Maybe I enjoyed my undergraduate experience because I was someone who like school in the middle of many people who were there because they were told to go there after high school, and now I'm no longer someone who is different or special and am around people who really like school. Perhaps I'm finding out that I like school because I knew my way around the system and did whatever I felt like doing within the confines of the educational system and didn't like actual jobs, and now I'm seeing that maybe I didn't really like school, I just liked doing what I wanted and the opportunity to not do work. Anyway, I want papers to be organic. I don't want to be forced and pressured to skim over various texts to find enough bullshit that supports some argument I don't really care all that much about making to fill twenty pages. And I realize that I'm papers are supposed to be organic, and that I'm supposed to read rather than skim things and really care about my argument, that I'm supposed to find something in the text I really care about arguing. But the thing is, I need more time to do that. I want to find a subject I like on my own, not because I have a deadline approaching. I then want to read everything I can find (that is not completely dull and uninteresting, in which case I will really try to read, but most likely end up skimming) on the subject, so that I actually know what I'm talking about in the paper, mull it over in my head a while until I feel confident in the matter and sincerely argue something. I want to become an expert in whatever I'm writing about so that I feel I can write about it. I'm not willing to become an expert (or even try that much) in every subject of every class I take. I admire those students who go the extra mile for every assignment and read something three times over and look up everything that they are confused about or find interesting, etc. I can't do that. Not with three classes, two sections to teach, friends to hang out with, a boyfriend to miss, TV to watch, music to listen to, movies to see, and more interesting things to read. I think I'm losing any conciseness and organization that I may have started out with here. Anyway, the point is I want to want to write papers, I want the process to be more natural, and I want to actually learn things in grad school. The whole idea of learning things just for a test or just for writing a paper has never felt more real or more appropriate than it does right now. And that just makes me sad, makes me think I'm wasting my time, and makes me want to work at a bookstore or in a videostore so that I can at least try to live up to my ideal grad school on my own. All this being said, I still think that I may feel differently about an MFA program in poetry, but I also know the odds of my being disappointed with that are pretty good. I know that I complain about grad school a lot, either in talking to people or in writing this blog, but it's something that I think about quite a bit and I can't help myself.

Riding Horses


Happy Birthday Linda!!!!

I saw a fantastic concert last night. My Brightest Diamond opened for Sufjan Stevens and his Butterfly Brigade in Indianapolis. I began looking into My Brightest Diamond after Colin Meloy recommended her (Shara Worden, it's a one-woman band) on The Decemberists' blog on Myspace. I really liked what I heard and was excited that she was opening for the very talented Mr. Stevens. She was fucking awesome live. Ms. Worden was accompanied by a string quartet, as well as a drummer and bass player for a couple of songs. She was equally adept at playing in a concert-hall style and rocking out, and has an absolutely amazing voice. I highly recommend her album Bring Me the Workhorse and seeing her live if you can. More information can be found here. Then, Sufjan Stevens took the stage with his band (including Shara Worden and her instrumentalists) all dressed in masks and wings. He played a variety of songs from Illinois, Michigan, Seven Swans, and some others. A highlight: his dedication of the eponymous song to Jacksonville (I did whoo-hoo at the mention of Nichols Park). He had a thirteen-piece band (that's what I counted anyway) including two trumpet players, one of which also brought out a piccolo trumpet. He was very gracious and gave some stories of inspiration for the songs he played. Overall, a really really fantastic night. And, we were three rows away, which was spectacular. I went up to the stage afterward when the lead trumpet player was up there putting his horns away and told him he did some awesome trumpeting and gave him thumbs-up. He said thanks and awesome and returned the thumb gesture. So yeah, everyone should go and see both My Brightest Diamond and Sufjan Stevens.

9.20.2006

A Million Ways

I just saw a sticker on a car that read "Your girlfriend swallows." Is this really supposed to be an insult. Are we to believe that every girl who swallows is a filthy whore? Maybe the girlfriend in question simply doesn't have the presence of mind to say, maybe spit it out the car window in a toll plaza. I saw this sticker after going through a frustrating exit from the parking lot by my building on campus. They redesigned said parking lot this summer, and I'm very unhappy about it. It is now composed of mostly diagonal parking spaces, which is fine and allows for more parking spaces, but at what cost? At what cost?! There is now one more exit, but that exit is placed in such a way that I would be truly shocked if an accident didn't occur by the end of the month. And, to have an effective parking lot, there needs to be some semblance of a logical brain inside the heads of the drivers who use it. You cannot wait in the middle of an aisle for a parking space that will be available eventually. If you do not see a car with reverse lights on, you cannot sit there waiting blocking the regular flow of traffic. If you have pulled past a spot that will now be vacant, you cannot back up when there are cars behind you to pull into that spot. Once your car is far enough from a spot that you have to put it in reverse, you have forfeited all rights to that space. !!!!!! Alright, time for a shower. I have much more to write about, but I am also very dirty. And you know what that means.

9.13.2006

Get Him Back

Adaptation
they told me I should give
it to them to publish---
sign the dotted line,
crossed t's and x's and all,
a year's worth of a blog.

"wouldn't that be uninteresting?
shouldn't there be something
added when moving media?"

they assured me everything
would be well and that I'd
even see a profit, the next
big thing, everyone will be
doing it - blogs on books

"don't you want to be successful?
can't you come live in the real
world with the rest of the adults?"

they ignored my reservations,
and I couldn't keep the appointments
I made with my reason and
better judgment, I went along
not knowing where I was going

"I suppose this could be worthwhile
the journey I mean, not the place we get to
I'll probably sleep when we get there"

they kept assuring me, even when
the newspapers hit the stands and
I wasn't even mentioned that day,
or the next, or the next, or the next,
not even a footnote in the histories

"we did what we could - you never
know when they'll bite and when they won't,
better luck next time, kid."


I liked how this turned out last night, but it could've been the influence of my sleep-deprived state and having just read a bit of Only Revolutions.

9.12.2006

Something In You

Hmm...much to blog about. Benefit for 826 in Chicago, eccentricities of the state of Michigan, upcoming MZD reading in Chicago, birthday presents, musings on unconditional love, thoughts on grad school and Freudian psychology, going to Bloomington...I broke down and listened to "Summersong" from The Decemberists' yet-to-be-released album. I was going to wait until October 3rd and listen to the album as a whole, all at once. But, my infatuation with fantastic music and Colin Meloy got the better of me and now I can't stop listening to it. It is very spectacular and I can't wait for two days before both Colin and his girlfriend Carson Ellis' birthday (I'm really not a stalker). I did buy a version of the Crane Wife, the Japanese folk tale some of the songs on the album (also named the Crane Wife) are written from. It's a very interesting story and the particular book I have has absolutely gorgeous illustrations. Speaking of good music, I currently recommend "Something In You" by the Orange Peels. Oh, I now have my "media center" all hooked up and running on my computer, which means I can record TV on my computer now, among other things. This is excellent since once again the TV season consists of nights where two shows that I watch are on at the same time and of course on nights that I have class.

Let's see...last weekend I went to Springfield to celebrate my Dad's birthday (Sunday) and my birthday (this Saturday--drinking at Fatty's everyone!). It was a good weekend with no heated arguments (really surprisingly). I made a DVD from home movies which I've titled "Tiny Jill 1985." I received some good gifts, specifically the 8th season of the Simpsons and the 2nd season of House. I just need the 5th season of the Simpsons and the 1st season of House for my not-so-ridiclously-circuitous plan to be complete. That is, the plan of having all the DVDs that have been released for those two TV shows.

Short on the unconditional love, because I need to start being productive today. I've always been attracted to the idea of such a love, perhaps since I've always felt that I was subject to particularly conditional love. It's an interesting concept, for sure, though it puzzles me a bit. I'm reminded of the lyrics to an Alanis Morissette song about the subject (which she tends to write about quite a bit), "That I would be loved even when I'm not myself." But if you are loved for who you are, and I think we can all agree that that is a legitimate reason to love someone, doesn't that become a bit meaningless if you still love that person when they're not themselves? If everything that was them and that you loved suddenly irrevocably changed, wouldn't it do more justice to the original love if it ceased after this alteration? Or something like that. But then I'm reminded of another quotation: "How am I not myself?"

Something to ponder. More later.

9.03.2006

The Skin of My Yellow Country Teeth

If memory serves, I opined that I wouldn't mind (and perhaps would like) to be a housewife-sort-of-person in some journal of the online variety. I stand by this assertion, though perhaps the proper categorization would be working-at-home. I'm thinking about this now since the past couple of days in my life have gone something like this: wake up late (thus avoiding a bit of a hangover in one case--beautiful), get around to showering whenever I feel like it, read, watch TV/movies/TV on DVD, write, listen to music, go out and buy stuff I need whever I feel like it, comment on student papers, etc. It's been a nice couple of days, though I can think of at least one thing missing from these last couple of days (namely sex...oh yeah, and the person's company as well). Anyway, I'm especially thinking of this now since I'm cooking (rigatoni-I found out I was out of penne with chicken, mushrooms, and cashews all in pesto) and blogging, listening to songs I've downloaded, and drinking V8 while cooking. I like the leisurely pace of this. And I like cooking (though I prefer to cook for more people than simply moi) and other more conventional kind of chores, though I prefer to do them in a less conventional way. So, I don't think that I'd mind if this was how I lived, for at least some part of my future. Or maybe I could teach a really light load. I don't know, something, I'm just rambling.

I am at the brink of making an important decision, though. Well, I look at it as important, though I'm sure I'll be in the minority. I think I'm going to start writing in my books, at least the ones I'm reading for school. I have always belonged to the school of thought that the books you read should stay in near-immaculate condition. So, I have never really marked up by books in any way. Maybe the occasional underlining of a quote (in pencil) or folding corners of pages to indicate important passages, but nothing else. But, I think I will now feel free to write all sorts of crap in the margins, underlining, etc. I'm hoping it will make me more scholarly. We'll see how it works. Anyway, time to eat.

Parliament Square

So it's been a little while since I posted, and there's much to write about, but I think I just want to accomplish two things in this particular post. First, I finally got around to finishing up a CD for my friend John, and I'm pretty proud of it. So, the track listing:

Jump Up and Down!
1. A Million Ways by Ok Go
2. The Lady from Riems by Reclinerland featuring Colin Meloy
3. Give Me Just a Little More Time by Chairman of the Board
4. Keep It Comin' Love by KC and the Sunshine Band
5. Question by Old 97's
6. (This Is) the Dream of Evan and Chan by Dntel featuring Ben Gibbard
7. Baby's On Fire by Venus in Furs
8. Retour a Vega by the Stills
9. Ugly Girl by Fleming and John
10. Children Go Where I Send You by Nina Simone
11. What Goes On by Sufjan Stevens
12. They by Jem
13. Thriller by Ben Gibbard
14. Human Behavior by the Decemberists
15. Nowhere Again by the Secret Machines
16. Dakota by Stereophonics
17. Empire State by All-Time Quarterback
18. Here It Goes Again by Ok Go
19. Juicebox by the Strokes
20. Stagger Lee by Lloyd Price
21. Song for Jedi by Dionysos
22. Once Around the Block by Badly Drawn Boy

I also made a compilation of the Decemberists for my Shakespeare and His Rivals seminar professor. This promises to be a good class, and I need to read The Taming of the Shrew at some point after I post this. The other thing: I just wrote a prosey-kind-of-poem that I'm not sure about, but I figured I'd post it in the excitement of just writing something. As always, feedback is welcome and appreciated.

In the Winter
as the smoke hangs off
the end of cigarettes
and the streets are
comparable to your
sophomore-year girlfriend,
frigid and empty,
you spend the hours
in a falsely-lit cafe
reading, but not escaping,
ever-present in your current
surroundings, your eyes
only following the words,
your hands blankly
turning pages.
The book is just an excuse
to feel literary while coffee
sits at your table,
to eavesdrop on the couple
occupying the more comfortable chairs.
"Did you know that the days
are continually getting logner?"
But what do they know?
You've seen that exhibit
at the planetarium too.
And your brain wanders away,
down the pier where that
space museum sits, jumping off,
out in the freezing water,
down to the bottom of the lake.
The light disappears as you look
to the surface, people pass by
and look down, but
no one comes in,
it's too cold outside to
practice lifeguarding.
A little girl waves, and
you return the gesture,
minus four fingers.
Someday things will work
out in your daydreams, you think
and it's so sweet.
The scent of patchouli
brings you back inside to
the wooden chairs and tables
(all but the two the
lovers are presently taking
away from everyone else)
and back to the book you're not reading
and never will.
One of these days you'll actually
read books, you think
and it's so easy to lie.

8.24.2006

Faded From the Winter

Let's picture the rest of the day going very well: I get home from work with a finished draft of my syllabus, call Dell and my phone actually works well in my apartment and the Dell person is very nice and helps me to fix my computer right away. Whatever is wrong with the big toe on my left foot fixes itself and I can go to the gym and feel better about myself. I drive to the city and use my VIP ticket, which I will pick up at will call with absolutely no problems, to go in and have a lengthy discussion with Ben Gibbard which results in us swapping phone numbers/e-mail addresses and we stay in close contact and he offers me a really cool job for after I graduate, and I meet all sorts of cool people through this friendship (including Colin Meloy!!!!). So, here's hoping.

I just wrote this poem/song and maybe I like it, but then again maybe I don't. I don't think I have a title yet.

that one time you gave me
an upside down umbrella
and I've been collecting
rain ever since.
I reach my hand in, so
I can always feel a pulse
and my hand's been a
shriveled prune for days now.
you take off my glasses
when you're in the driver's seat
and I'm left trying to
distinguish between all the distortions
coming through the window.

I'll read up on everything
you've ever done and
never feel better.
I'll ignore your presence
and not run very far
I'm pulled back by your tether.

You'll then leave me behind
the wheel, the speed always
increasing, though it's true
the airbag has never failed.
I try to be a boyscout, always
prepared and end up tying a
string of knots with hands
that won't stay idle.
all the time now I'm keeping
an eye onthe clouds, noting
any changes in color and shape
but I still venture out
whenever it starts to pour.



And then I suppose repeat the little chorus part if it's a song.

8.23.2006

Bloody Ibiza

In talking to a guy from Britain on-line yesterday, I picked up some more British slang. Turns out, those fuckers can be mean. A new word to add to my global lexicon: chav, which means a variety of things, and inspired an interesting site. Though not as interesting as this one. And here I was thinking that Britons were all tea-slurping, semi-enlightened, non-Bush-voting people who had to deal with problems like having soccer as a national sport and eating terrible food. America was starting to look pretty good at this point. I mean we hate people, but our slang dictionaries don't advocate slaughtering a group of people. Then I read this. In unrelated news, I visited a porn site that had 110 categories! So, the world and the internet are filled with hate, but at least you can also get a bunch of porn filled with lots and lots of lovin'.

8.21.2006

"I'm back baby!"

I've discovered that two weeks in a car with your mom is a very long time. And I never imagined saying this (or writing this), but it's good to be back in Dekalb. For a long time now, probably since I was in college, but maybe earlier than that still, there has been some part of my life, era, if you will, that I've felt distanced from. All the pieces, whether determined by my age, geographical location, friendships, etc. haven't all coalesced into one big ball of me in quite some time. I'd look back and at least one of these pieces didn't fit and didn't feel like it was truly a part of my identity, myself. I mention this because on Saturday, in the early evening, I was riding in the car, looking out the window, listening to Transatlanticism when we crossed the state line in a triumphant return to Illinois and all the pieces came together. It was the first time that everything in my life felt like my life in several years, and it was pretty spectacular. I also thought how glad I am to have been born and bred in various places in Illinois, especially after driving through a bunch of crazy states on a not-entirely-voluntary trip.

Some highlights from the voyage (in no particular order other than when I think of them):
1) I met Ben Gibbard!!!!!!!! I will write of this further when I will hopefully have prolonged conversation with him at the Revenge of the Bookeaters this Thursday.
2) I saw Death Cab for Cutie at the Greek Theatre at Berkeley, along with Mates of State and Spoon!!!!
3) I discovered that both Mountain and Pacific time zones follow Eastern time for most television programming (something I have always wondered about).
4) I can now say I've been to San Francisco and to City Lights bookstore.
5) I visited Hyde Street Pier and paid 25 cents to light a little white candle (see "Grace Cathedral Hill" by the Decemberists.
6) I saw Little Miss Sunshine.
7) I saw a horse's penis.
8) I drove by the studio in Sausalito where Fleetwood Mac recorded Rumours.
9) I visited John Steinbeck's hometown, Salinas.
10) I visited Sundance's hometown, Park City.
11) I learned many interesting things at the Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum.
12) I wrote a poem.*

Highlights of being back inDekalb:
1) Seeing friends and my fella at the Annex.
2) Eating Portillo's.
3) Having I-haven't-done-anything-remotely-sexual-in-two-weeks sex.

It's good to be home.

*We Ride the Clouds

With handfuls each of
Montana and Washington
you're looking out to
the horizon for a mushroom cloud,
confusedly asking me
about a man called Grimes.
I reply: I can't tell you
when it's happy hour in Bangkok;
I'll always let you know the
whereverweare time.
the thought spoken aloud,
the rest jostling around
up there to be put to
paper for you:
I should be having sex right now.
I need to read more Thompson.
I have only enough money to
be a partial completist.
I think it's too early to say
certain words, but I kind of want to
and am not sure if that makes
me feel worried or wonderful.

with an unrecognized quote
and an unfinished hangman,
I had a little hope, a possible drizzle
ending two years of draught
(after three months of raindancing).
If only the gods had responded earlier,
you think; we would've had more time
and I wonder if it's a meritless concern,
if we'll have time enough.
In dreams, in night and day,
I don't stray, pass up offers
wished for so intensely and
I think that you have made
the bitter of bittersweet
retreat to the dusty corners of
the attic on my shoulders.
the thoughts not yet uttered
but repeated in this echo chamber:
I want you here.
This place would shine bright in my view
if only you were in the vicinity.

With thoughts twirling and feet stumbling,
I am attempting to fit the pieces together
even though I've lost the top of the box
with the picture. And maybe the thought
comes that I'm doing this blind
but you'll be guiding my hand
and it's put to paper, but quickly targeted
as overdone. I realize it's always been
a gut feeling and my ruminations,
spoken aloud or not, today, tomorrow, or never,
written in a vaguely cryptic manner,
will never all reach you the traffic's bad
from synapse to synapse to mouth.
Instead I'll kiss you and tell you
how you remind me of those
two that are at the top, you
know the ones I mean.

8.03.2006

Yellow Butterfly

An album refers to a collection of songs, not a medium!!!!!! Aaarrrgghhh!! I forgot about this one when listing my pet peeves, but this is a big one for me. I absolutely hate it when people lament the death of an album (and they're actually talking about records rather than the state of music today). An album can be on a record, or an 8-track, or a cassette, or a CD, etc. Albums have been around for quite some time, are around today, and will continue to be around in the future (unless you listen to the doomsayers who predict that mp3s will effectively kill the music industry as we know it today, and c'mon those people are just bored and wishing to predict disaster). The term album is not a synonym for record or vinyl. There are very many baby boomers who cannot make this distinction, who pretend to know what they're talking about when it comes to the '60s and that era's music, and yet cannot tell the difference between common terms used to describe collections of music. I used to think that I was born in the wrong generation, I should've lived through that era, etc. Then I realized that it would basically be the same as living in this generation except with a better soundtrack. Some people like to refer to me as a hippie. I am not. Because, my god, most hippies were absolutely fucking idiots. Okay, enough ranting. And not that this has to do with anything, really, but a very good Simpsons quote that has been going around in my head while writing: "It's one of those campy '70s throwbacks that appeals to Generation Xers." "We need another Vietnam to thin out their ranks a little." So maybe W was just catching up on his Simpsons.

8.02.2006

Country House

I went to the bookstore today to write down the books I'll need to look up online for better prices. And I checked to see if the book I ordered for my students was in. It was, and the little tag underneath had my name under the Professor space! I thought it was pretty cool. It'll cost them $52.65. Sorry students. I really need to get around to making a syllabus for my classes so that I can make that book worth the fifty bucks. As per a conversation last night, I've been thinking about the little things that make me happy (it really doesn't take much at all), and I've decided to compile a short list of the things I can think of right now that make me grin, and most likely cause me to jump up and down a bit.

Things that make Jill happy:
1. Discovering the identity of a good song
2. Great America (okay, not so little a thing, but it does make me ridiculously happy)
3. Free samples
4. Waving to people, especially when they wave back
5. Coming home at 5am, turning on the TV, and Bosom Buddies is on.
6. Leaves walking with me
7. When the count for the number of great songs featured in the preview for Little Miss Sunshine reaches 3 (!)
8. The preview for Little Miss Sunshine

7.31.2006

Earth Angel

I drove my friend Angela's car a bit last night. It's been quite some time since I've driven an automatic, and it was quite interesting to do so. Getting out of the parking lot, I kept braking, having to remind my foot that it doesn't need to do anything. The ride was smoother after that, but I kept wanting to shift very badly. I think that when it comes time for me to buy a car, whenever I actually have money, so probably not for a good amount of time, I will purchase a car with manual transmission. Automatic is boring. A gentleman that works downstairs is celebrating his retirement today. I was told there was ice cream. I went there, signed the book, got some ice cream, and headed for the door. I'm classy like that. In all fairness, I was told by a number of people that I should go over there and that there was delicious ice cream. I found this to be true. They had pre-scooped vanilla, strawberry, chocolate, and I think the last was pralines n' cream. Vanilla, with hot fudge and caramel and a bit of whipped cream. I have to start planning/packing for the trip to California this week. I read in an interview with Ben Gibbard that there is a restaurant in San Francisco which he frequents everytime he is in the area. So I need to determine if this restaurant still exists and where it is so that I can go there and meet him and he'll immediately fall madly in love with me, but I'll say "No, I can't be with you, but we'll be great friends." And we will be and then he'll give me a job where I'll start out as just doing odd jobs for him and the members of the band, but soon I will move up and will eventually direct music videos for them and learn how to produce a record and it will be how I break into the industry. So here's hoping that I go to that restaurant and that he is there. Anyone have any other suggestions for San Francisco spots not to miss?

Everyday Is Like Sunday

Man, I wish I was photogenic. Oh well, another one of those things that would be nice, but probably isn't all that important in the grand scheme of things. I went and saw The Devil Wears Prada tonight and then went to the bar and became surprisingly drunk from relatively little alcohol. I'm well aware of the double standards that exist in our society, but I often don't think too much about them or am not really bothered by them. But, in watching this movie I was reminded of one in particular that I don't like, particularly because it has directly to do with me as of late. The whole thing with guys hitting on girls with boyfriends being seen as suave and charming and of course she should date this guy because look at how suave and charming he is. And then if a girl hits on a guy with a girlfriend, she is a compete harlot, whore, slut, every name under the sun you can think of, and should no longer be a card-carrying member of the human race. C'mon, this is such bullshit and horribly horribly unfair and fuck it. Another serious thought running through my head in the movie (which was alright, especially as a movie seen at the cheap theater, but one that I don't have any particular yen to see again) has to do with a decision I made what, about four years ago now. I'd been moving closer and closer to living in the real world among actual people, especially since getting to college, but very much especially since I started dating huge douchebag. It was during this particular time that I consciously made the decision that I would in fact join the world of everyone else and try to be with and be close to actual people rather than people I interacted with solely through pages, speakers, screens, etc. And when I fell in love with him (aww....) this became very evident. Since then I've watched films that dealth with being with someone and felt more empathetic with the characters as I now finally had some experience to back up connecting emotionally with them. I had always been able to empathize with characters, but I began doing it with a much greater understanding. When I was dumped for the final time, this was very much evident as well. Now, whenever there's a break-up scene in a movie, I'm acutely aware of the pain of the situation. I had always felt bad, but now I feel exactly as I felt when it happened to me, with all the intensity of emotion. And it makes me wonder if I made the right decision when I chose to live in the real world (though I know I did). But anyway, enough blathering on, I should probably get to sleep. That's where I'm a viking!

7.30.2006

Times Like These

I was about to meet Dan Castellaneta in my dream last night when I awoke to my mom calling me. She then proceeded to call me about once to twice an hour for three to four hours before I began ignoring the call. Fucking Christ. Little Miss Sunshine is now in New York and L.A., but won't be in Chicago until August 4th, a day which I'm told will have me in Joliet packing and getting ready for the big road trip. So it looks like I won't be able to see it for a while and when I do see it I'm sure it will cost less money, but oh, I want to see it right away! I just watched the video for Title and Registration again. It's not at all like the video I pictured in my head when first listening to the song (I will direct music videos someday), but it's still very fantastic and features Ben Gibbard looking particularly wonderful I think. I also watched a video on a friend's former students' blog which was pretty well-done and amusing. I mention it here since one part featured a guy eating a bowl of Tic Tacs, which, when in mass and collected in a bowl look like a bunch of pills and I was reminded that the sight and/or thought of such things now make me feel nauseous. This is especially noteworthy since I've never really had a physical reaction to the thought and/or sight of anything in my life. I almost couldn't watch that part of the video and that is the first time I've ever said (or written) anything like that. Hopefully this isn't a permanent effect since I don't like feeling nauseous or not being able to watch something. Anyway, I recently listened to Sufjan Stevens' cover of What Goes On, and I must say that I kinda like it. I think it will go on my very short list of acceptable Beatles covers. Alright, more reporting on the exciting news of Jill-town later.

7.20.2006

The Predatory Wasp Of The Palisades Is Out To Get Us!

So I'm leaving for California on August 5th and I just realized 'Holy crap, that's pretty soon!' I also just found out that I won't be allowed to drive over 70mph for the whole trip. This whole thing will be ever-so-much fun. I'll just have to keep repeating to myself "I'll be in the same room as Ben Gibbard." And I was thinking the other day that I've been in the same room as three members of my harem so far! Anyways, I've been inspired today to list three of my pet peeves.
3 Pet Peeves:

1) Drivers of vehicles yielding to me when I'm crossing the street. Listen people, it's much easier and makes so much more sense for people to navigate around cars rather than cars navigating around people. I'm planning my movements based on the fact that you and your speed will remain constant, when you do not (however good the intention may be), everything is fucked. Whoever came up with the whole pedestrians-have-the-right-of-way thing should be dug up and shot, and then run over for good measure.

2) People who keep their hand on the door as they're entering a building even though I'm holding the door for them. You don't need to touch the door, I'm holding it for you, that's the whole point. There are two levels of this though, the people who do this but say thank you are much better than the fucksticks who do this and don't acknowledge the gesture in any way whatsoever.

3) Large groups of students and their parents touring campus who take up the whole sidewalk and refuse to budge even an inch to let me by, especially when I'm going the opposite direction. I'm also irritated by small groups of people who refuse to move and stay in a cluster rather than going single file to ensure that the sidewalk can serve its purpose of being a two-way route, but I've run into two touring groups today. Why would you not move to allow someone to walk on the sidewalk?! And usually I'll give in and walk on the grass, but no more! I'm going to keep walking and keep my shoulders square, and if I'm not in a good movie, maybe throw an elbow out as well. I really don't like you people, you're fucking ignorant and inconsiderate.

On a happier note, I found some very good poems today (which always makes me happy) while searching for one that Bonnie may want to have read at her wedding. So I will share these now, along with one I wrote:

At the Office Early by Ted Kooser
Rain has beaded the panes
of my office windows,
and in each little lens
the bank at the corner
hangs upside down.
What wonderful music
the rain must have made
in the night, a thousand banks
turned over, the change
crashing out of the drawers
and bouncing upstairs
to the roof, the soft
percussion of ferns
dropping out of their pots,
the ballpoint pens
popping out of their sockets
in a fluffy snow
of deposit slips.
Now all day long,
as the sun dries the glass,
I'll hear the soft piano
of banks righting themselves,
the underpaid tellers
counting their nickels and dimes.

Corners by Stephen Dunn*
I've sought out corner bars, lived in corner houses;
like everyone else I've reserved
corner tables, thinking they'd be sufficient.
I've met at corners
perceived as crossroads, loved to find love
leaning against a lamp post
but have known the abruptness of corners too,
the pivot, the silence.
I've sat in corners at parties hoping for someone
who knew the virtue
of both distance and close quarters, someone with a
corner person's taste
for intimacy, hard won, rising out of shyness
and desire.
And I've turned corners there was no going back to,
corners
in the middle of a room that led
to Spain or solitude.
And always the thin line between corner
and cornered,
the good corners of bodies and those severe bodies
that permit no repose,
the places we retreat to, the places we can't bear
to be found.

The Heart's Location by Peter Meinke
all my plans for suicide are ridiculous
I can never remember the heart's location
too cheap to smash the car
too queasy to slash a wrist
once jumped off a bridge
almost scared myself to death
then spent two foggy weeks
waiting for new glasses

of course I really want to live
continuing my lifelong search
for the world's greatest unknown cheap restaurant
and a poem full of ordinary words
about simple things
in the inconsolable rhythms of the heart

They eat out by Margaret Atwood
In restaurants we argue
over which of us will pay for your funeral

though the real question is
whether or not I will make you immortal.

At the moment only I
can do it and so

I raise the magic fork
over the plate of beef fried rice

and plunge it into your heart.
There is a faint pop, a sizzle

and through your own split head
you rise up glowing;

the ceiling opens
a voice sings Love Is A Many

Splendoured Thing
you hang suspended above the city

in blue tights and a red cape,
your eyes flashing in unison.

The other diners regard you
some with awe, some only with boredom;

they cannot decide if you are a new weapon
or only a new advertisement.

As for me, I continue eating;
I liked you better the way you were,
but you were always ambitious.

A Day In the Sun
Laughing like a couple of kids
who just bought a well for a village,
walking into the sunset like the heroes
of a mining town, when those streets
were dangerous to walk.
Carried off like a damsel in distress
after the fire-breathing dragon is slain.
These are what we witness, gathered here
with promise of a plate and a dance.
Oh, we'll be in the presence of a love
so deep that even the most experienced
swimmer will drown, not wave
and we'll glow by the soft light
of a radiant bride, all in white.
But we won't all have our own wedding
night, pretending to be nervous,
like they used to do it.
None of us will be carried across
the threshold to start a new life,
similar to the old, except now it's official,
sealed with rings and a kiss.
We'll be only the bystanders, well-wishers
and you'll be the happy couple,
arms and everything linked
like hypertext on a website which proclaims:
'We have neither pride nor prejudice,
we have happiness.'

*Further comments on this poem and corners in a future post

7.17.2006

I'm Still Your Fag

Hey, at least I can cry again, and that's a good thing. Oh, my ego needs boosting constantly; it's a very needy entity. But I did just write this, which I think may be at least decent, but we will see how it holds up under further examination. I'm not quite sure about the title.

HD Perspective
riding away at the most absurd speeds,
but I never felt unsafe, you told me
everything would be alright and I believed.
walking into the night when the danger was
stirring, but I just needed to hold your hand.
I never knew about the underbelly until
we met and I never knew I could hurt
someone so much until we fell apart.
the tentacles kept us together, but they couldn't
reach that far south and I couldn't
reach that far to shore.
they wanted us to be the lighthouse, but I
have further seas to travel. they needed
us to be the buoys, waving to the coast,
and I waved my goodbye.

As always, any and all feedback is very welcome. And let's end this blog on a positive note (I would reference Mel Brooks here, but that gag works only with sound). I've been contemplating lately the degree of attractiveness I hold, and while I understand that on a purely physical level, I'm not anything to write home about (though I have noticed that people I consider less attractive than myself receive much more attention and get hit on so much more than I do, which confounds me a bit), I have a fantastic personality; I'm tons of fun. Well, I have fun--I amuse and entertain myself. I don't know if other people have the same amount of amusement and entertainment around me, but I'm happy and that's the most important thing. [Insert laugh here]. But anyway...someday everything will come together. "It's a shoreline, and it's half speed. It's a cruel world, and it's time."

July, July!

I'll be working full-time this week and the assistant lady to the boss guy is on vacation, so the task of making boss guy's coffee in the morning has fallen on my shoulders. You'd think after working for over a year at Starbuck's, I would be well-equipped to handle this task. And you'd be wrong. He has a Mr. Coffee and really, I have two-tenths of an idea of how to use the thing. I don't drink coffee and know only what I learned and needed to know to work at a coffee shop about the bevarage and its preparation. I've never actually used a coffee maker thingie in my life, so I'm very nervous this morning about the coffee issue. Eep!
In non-coffee-related news, I told my dad about the whole Ibuprofen incident. It went fairly well, except that I could tell I made him sad, and that's not good. It's dawned on me that I'm very quickly approaching the point where I have no money at all, so I'm a tad worried about that and will step up the not-spending-money (or at least putting everything on my credit card that I possibly can) and trying-to-find-a-second-job efforts. Although working full-time this week should help a tad. But, the best news of all time (or at least of this past weekend) concerns the Decemberists. They have recently signed to Capitol records and will be releasing their fourth full-length album (titled The Crane Wife) on October 3rd (incidentally two days before both Colin Meloy and Carson Ellis' birthday, which I find amusing (in that they have the same birthday)), followed by a US tour!!!! Even better, while no release date is secured, there will be a DVD that includes a live performance, backstage footage, all of their videos, and a video for The Tain!!!!!! I think I came just a little bit after reading about this.

7.13.2006

"But it was still me who had all the good ideas."

V for Vendetta (Spoiler Warning!!)
This is, I suppose, my thesis: Much like all good adaptations, the two works cannot really be compared and contrasted, but rather viewed and analyzed as two separate and distinct entities. That being said, I first started to read the graphic novel around the time the semester was ending and summer was beginning. Having seen the film, reading the book was atop my list of things to do over the break. So, I went to Barnes & Noble, sat in the cafe finding all the other comfy chairs taken, and began reading. I didn't get far before I was disappointed. In the book, Parliament is blown up right away (6 pages in). To me, it worked better as the climax, since it's fucking Parliament (!). I'm guessing that Roger Ebert would also not get far into the book after his beloved architectural masterpiece was eradicated. So, I didn't read much of it before I put it back on the shelf and went home (probably to watch the Simpsons). My second attempt proved more successful and fruitful. And this is where we come to my thesis. There are very many differences from page to screen and while I will comment on some of them, I think it's important to understand that a strict they-left-this-out, they-added-this is pretty pointless. The tone and essence are captured in the film, and the rest is moot. I can't say which version I prefer (though part of me edges toward the film, most likely because I saw it first and thoroughly enjoyed it); they are both pretty incredible, impressive, thought-provoking texts. I have finished reading the text of the graphic novel, though I am still reading an article that follows written by Alan Moore, the writer of the series. So far it is very enlightening and highly entertaining (and I very much recommend), but I also have a fear of losing everything that I've written here so far by a glitch in blogger, so I'm trying to finish this as soon as I can. One thing I noticed, and I'm well aware that this could be just a failing of myself as a reader here, there were times when it was a bit difficult to distinguish which character was in the frame and also how he/she fit into the world represented in the novel. I think it was a bit easier to follow who everyone was and what their characterization was in the film. Also, while the Guy Fawkes theme is heavy in both, it seems to me that the film emphasizes it a tad more, or at least gives further attempt to really draw together the past of England with its present and future. I'm not saying that the novel is incohesive, but the gut feeling I get in thinking about the two (and granted, it's been a little while since I've seen the film and I only saw it once) is that the film has a more cohesive feel to it. I think that I like Evey both as a character and her role in the whole better in the film. There is an interlude in the book featuring a song entitled "This Vicious Cabaret" that is truly inspired and perfect. So, I guess I've lost a bit of steam in my train of thought in analyzing V for Vendetta, both as a film and a graphic novel, but I have to go make another round and deliver a file, so...please comment if you've experience one or both because I think this is a piece of work that merits much discussion.

7.12.2006

"Nothing's gonna stand in our way, not tonight..."

I have found myself coming across several statements today that I felt I could respond to starting out, "After spending three days in a psych ward..." I have not actually responded with this, but I have thought about it. And I think one of the most interesting things about this is that my expectation for people's reactions has not been an uncomfortable silence where they are thinking "Why should I listen to this person who is obviously crazy because she just spent three days in a psych ward?", but more of a hushed reverence where they are thinking "Ah, we must listen to the wisdom she gleaned from "observing" a psych ward for three days." I now feel that when my mom gets on one of her rambling goes-nowhere stories about the men she works with at Caterpillar that while I have never really met any of them, I feel pretty comfortable thinking are at least somewhere in the vicinity of the category of redneck or white trash, or whatever colorful epithet you prefer, I can say, "Yeah, I spend three days with some of those people in a psych ward."

So, anyway, here's the scoop. The whole and real story for anyone who is curious about some part or cluless about all of it (I don't know how many people actually know what happened to me this weekend right now). Saturday night I had a party at my apartment which went swimmingly, up until the point that I went away from all of my guests and laid down in my closet for some reason (and I apologize to all of my guests that I ignored and left to clean up the trappings of the soiree). You see, lately I've noticed that when I have an "episode" of depression, it's different than it used to be. Before I had some event to point to as the catalyst, and whether that event was really what I was sad about or not, at least I could recognize it as a trigger and know why I spiraled downward. As of late, I honestly don't know why I start feeling bad and it tends to come out of nowhere. Like Saturday night. I've also noticed that instead of crying and wallowing in self-pity, I now become angry and frustrated (again I'm not sure the reason behind these emotions) and cut my arm and throw things in my apartment. So, after everyone left my place, I did both of these things, but really trashed my place (hence the last blog). I then hung out with a couple of people that were still at the front of my apartment building, tried making out with a friend of mine (which I've been tending to do a bit, and again, I'm not really sure why other than it is a challenge because he persistently refuses), drove around town a bit, knocked on a friend's door (thereby freaking out his girlfriend I learned later), came back home (all while barefoot and wearing a camisole and pajama pants mind you) and took the rest of the Zoloft I had (three 100mg pills) and four or five handfuls of Ibuprofen. I then went to sleep, woke up some hours later to vomit on the area of my carpet next to my bed, stayed in a half-asleep, half-vomiting, half-snot-infused-sort-of-daze, all while feeling really shitty. My friend called me (I was supposed to attend another friend's bridal shower), I told her I thought I should go to the doctor (so maybe I could feel not shitty), she came over, saw the remainder of the Ibuprofen on my kitchen table, took me outside and called an ambulance. Two police cars, a fire truck, and an ambulance all arrived (the ambulance being the last on the scene), and I was carried off, with an IV in me and all my vitals monitored to the Kishwaukee hospital. I was in the emergency room for a couple of hours while they ran blood tests and gave me a tetanus shot and then I was admitted to the psych ward. As this blog is getting pretty long already and as the totality of my experience in this ward is probably good for a whole other blog or two, I'll cut this story short, and get to my explanation.

My explanation: okay, I can't really give a complete and accurate reason since I'm still not sure what actually caused this chain of events (because, if I do say so myself, it was a pretty kick-ass party at my place, although being really drunk off of Everclear-infused punch most of the evening may have had something to do with it). But I thought about it a bit while sitting around in a confined space and think I have a good grasp on at least a partial reason. I have thought about suicide and had it as one of my options for a long time now, basically as long as I can remember, but especially since I was a freshman in high school (my first absolutely clear memory of thinking about offing myself). I think I needed to come closer to actual suicide than I ever had in the past as a way to finally really deal with those thoughts and what lies behind them. I think I am now revoking my 26 rule. I don't want to say that I experienced one of those I want to live! moments, because I didn't. I knew when taking the pills (the thought of any pills now make me pretty nauseous, and I don't think I'll be purchasing any Ibuprofen for quite some time) that I had a chance of dying, but also knew that the likelihood of that happening was pretty slim (these were basically the cheapest, OTC pills I could find when I bought them and have used three instead of the recommended two whenever I had a headache). So, I didn't have some life-is-great epiphany, but I also am pretty sure that in the future, I will no longer think of killing myself as an option. So, while I may have regrets about this weekend (and feel really bad about my three great, sweethearts of friends cleaning up the huge mess that was my apartment), it looks as though it did produce something worthwhile. Speaking of which, another good, sweetheart of a friend came to visit me and brought me the graphic novel V for Vendetta, which I am almost finished with. I may have to wait until tomorrow to write a post about it, though, since I have actually been pretty busy making deliveries and such at work today. Oh, one more thing, it seems my flower precedes me. I have had several indications of this in the past, and another one today. I went to a professor's office seeking his signature, and the first thing he said to me was, "Oh, I recognize you because of the flower. What's your name?"

7.09.2006

7.08.2006

We Looked Like Giants

I suppose I should be surprised at how quickly I can pass from mood to mood, but I'm really not. And lately, as in the past six months or so, I really have no control over my emotions whether they're good or bad. And I've noticed for a long time that I have no control over the bad ones, but lately I have nothing over the good ones either. I'll walk down the street fucking giddy and laughing and I don't even know why. "I don't know about you, but I swear on my name they can smell it on me, and I've never been too good with secrets" This is one thing that I think happened earlier tonight, though I could be wrong. The girlfriend of the guy I'm fixated on came into the bar after I'd been there for a while. She passed me, we made eye contact, I smiled politely. I got caught up in another conversation. Then, one guy that I was talking to me, who I had told the situation to, tells me that this girl kept giving him the eye and smiling, as if she thought I was with him and wanted to make me jealous. Now, I don't know if this is what actually happened, but if it is...it amuses me endlessly. Too bad I didn't end up in a good mood to enjoy it. Instead I'm in more or less a very confused state. Since I just dropped this guy off. The last time I did this, he made out with me (I didn't know how to not respond) and I ended up in trouble since I was inadvertently making out with one of my friend's boyfriends. So, now he is no one's boyfriend, and I found myself in the same situation. And instead of just explaining that I didn't want to make out with him, I found myself once again doing nothing and just kind of going along with it. I don't know why I do the things I do. Hopefully, some day I'll at least figure part of it out. Oh, Ben Gibbard, when will you be mine? Oh, Jill, when will you learn?

7.07.2006

Brass In Pocket

Okay, so a couple things I've been thinking about today. And I might say realized, but I know I haven't, but I've been thinking about these things quite a bit and especially today. And the song in the title I've heard twice and think especially meaningful. But, to get one thing out of the way...au jus is really fucking good. And Molly's barbeque sauce is good as well, but not like anything special good, just pretty good. Anyway, I've been pretty fixated with one person lately, and I fully realize that I don't have much chance with this person, but that hasn't stopped me from trying. And I'll say one thing that I especially thought of driving home this evening. While I may get discouraged from the lack of hope of me actually dating (or at least having sex with) this person, it's so much much more depressing to think of not having someone in mind. And for a long time I didn't, but now that I do, it's so much more sad to think of not liking this person, even if this person is oh-so-happily involved with someone else. At least I have a goal, and as long as I have that, at least I have something. And while I once had a keen finger on the other thing I was thinking about, perhaps I don't. It's probably something I've rehashed time and time again. So, to sum up, Molly's beef rolls are very good, with both au jus and barbecue sauce, and my eternal thanks to Chris for bringing me that today (I'll make it up by bringing you some of the best spaghetti sauce ever soon), and I wish I could not feel guilty about things, but very certain things in particular, and while I have ever so many great qualities, I don't have the quality of having someone that I want to have. In the wise words of Fiona Apple, "oh well".

7.06.2006

"This is the end of the road Galvatron!"


It looks as though me and the high school kid that also works in this office are having a desktop background and theme war. Yesterday I left a wonderful picture of the Decemberists up and had the standard Windows XP theme and mouse pointer. Today I come in and there's a jungle scene featuring a panther as the background and some crazy, annoying look-at-how-cool-this-font is theme and annoying neon, some-guy-swinging-on-a-vine-or-else-a-snake to replace the pointer and hourglass. So I retialated with standard theme and pointer and this picture as the background. It also commemorates my dream from last night. I was in prison, only it was very lax on the rules and such. More like a boarding school than a prison, especially since it included inmates that didn't seem to have a reason for being incarcerated. And it was co-ed. So I get there and they give me my prison uniform, only it looks more like scrubs and I have some of my own clothes as well. There's this big bald guy that keeps giving me shit and we're all going to the cafeteria when a fight breaks out between the two of us. I beat the crap out of him and this gets me awe and respect in the inmate community since this was the big bully guy that no one messed with. So I go and eat my lunch with an assortment of people I knew as a kid, people I know now, people I've never seen before in my life. And George Clooney is there, and I talk with him a bit and talk to other people about how I beat the shit out of this guy, and then he comes over and we decide to call a truce and everything's gravy. Then, lunch is almost over and I see that Ben Gibbard (and the rest of Death Cab for Cutie) are at another table next to Colin Meloy (who later kind of disappears). So I talk to Ben Gibbard and he doesn't believe that big bully guy will not retaliate, and mostly it's just me flirting with Ben Gibbard, and that was pretty much the end. Oh, it was so nice. So I'm going to stay there for the next couple of days or as long as that can carry me. Romantic sigh.
Last night I watched Transformers the Movie. And first of all, it's great. Completely holds up, though I guess that could also be since I watch it fairly often and it's maybe been two years since I've seen it last. But one thing I noticed this time that made me feel kind of sad, or I guess a bit old, was that at the beginning the narrator is explaining the situation and the war between the Autobots and the Decepticons over Cybertron and he says that the year is 2005. Wow.

7.05.2006

"...we don't stand a chance..."


I just set this picture of the Decemberists as the background on the computer I use at work. I'm pretty excited about it. See? It doesn't take much to make me happy. Staying that way on the other hand...
Speaking of, my recent posts and more recent deletion of said "angsty" posts have caused quite a stir on the comment wall, and by quite a stir I mean two comments have mentioned this. I thought it best to erase the record of me yelling at and feeling sorry for myself (at the same time, that's how talented I am), since a) it does smack of teenage yuppie angst, and b) it doesn't make for interesting reading (not that any of my posts do, but this one has a really good picture!). Okay, in talking to a good friend of mine, I've decided that after I get my degree, I'm moving to Bloomington/Normal, getting a decent-paying job, learning how to play piano and guitar and starting a band with a group of my friends called Stitch This, Jimmy. Let's see, what else? Dekalb puts on good fireworks and has strange people residing within its borders who marry their sister and collect kernels of corn in their beard. House is a damn fine show. I am ever closer to finishing part one of my CD project. I'm hosting my first party ever at my apartment this Saturday. We still need to finalize plans for a Great America trip. And I'm going to see Little Miss Sunshine on July 26th (which happens to be Kevin Spacey's birthday).

6.30.2006

Elvis Presley Blues

This is addictive, and I really enjoy reading all the comments. It's things like this, along with my affinity for audio commentaries and tests, etc., that make me a nerd and talk about things that no one cares about. Speaking of talking, the past two nights have been extraordinarily fun for me. I was pretty intoxicated for both, spent time with good groups of people, and was highly amused and entertained for the entirety of both. But, to bring in the talking part, there are a lot of instances where I become a talkative drunk, but man alive! have I been a really talkative drunk as of late. So if you're out with me and this happens and I'm blathering on, just tell me to can it.

I finished Let It Be by Colin Meloy today and am now very sad that it's done. I really liked reading it, first because of my obsession with Colin Meloy, but for other reasons as well. It is a collection of memories from his formative years with music, specifically the album Let It Be by the Replacements. When I first read about this book (it is in the 33 1/3 series, which includes other musicians writing about other albums), I assumed it would consist mostly of review-type of material, i.e. this is what happens in this track and this is why it is so great and/or important, listen to this guitar solo and let me recount the technical aspects of it that makes it so kick-ass, etc. Really, it is a sort-of memoir of this specific period of his youth, which was spent with the Replacements and other bands used as the soundtrack. It was also interesting to read in that it brought in elements and reminded me of two other books I've recently read, Liars and Saints by Maile Meloy (Colin's sister) and Killing Yourself to Live by Chuck Klosterman. LandS is a novel and it is very interesting to trace the inspiration (seemingly) behind some aspects of the book with the author's childhood. Killing Yourself to Live chronicles Klosterman's trip to sites of musicians' deaths around the country, but it mostly the writer musing on the music and women in his life. I will try to start another book either tonight or tomorrow, but I will continue to mourn the loss of Colin Meloy's narrative.

6.29.2006

Roy Walker

About a month ago I started taking Zoloft. I haven't noticed any difference yet, but here's the thing: what am I supposed to notice exactly? I'm not sure I understand how it's going to work, and by it I'm referring to living without depression/obsessive compulsive disorder. What will it be like exactly? This notion of living "normally" doesn't really make sense to me. I have noticed that for awhile now, whenever I have an "episode", I feel increasingly detached from it. It used to be that whenever I was down, I couldn't really picture being up, but if I was up, I could always picture being down. Now, I still can't do up when I'm down, but I also can't really remember what it's truly like being down when I'm up. This morning I woke up and it took me a minute to even remember that I was down at the very end of last night. I'm not sure if this is a good or a bad thing. I do know that this is just me rambling, so I'll stop and continue reading Let It Be by Colin Meloy and imagine the day when I'll call him my good friend and maybe we'll have a book club or I'll come over to his house and he'll try out new songs for me or we'll just hang out watching Bosom Buddies and music videos, and we'll both know that if the world was more fair and I was a bit older (or he a bit younger) and we had met years before that day, everything would be right in the world. [insert tee hee here].

6.27.2006

If You're Feeling Sinister

I watched this video about ghosts last night and proceeded to freak myself out a bit. It doesn't take much to make me scared, and once I am, every frightening thing that I've ever seen, heard about, or imagined runs through my head and doesn't stop (I have little to no control over what goes on up there). One summer I was living with my mom and slept in the basement every night since the most comfortable bed was down there and also since my mom pretty much refuses to use air conditioning unless a warning for heat stroke has been broadcast. This was while I was still dating huge douchebag, and we would call each other pretty much every night since he lived in the next state over. So I would end up kind of scared right before going to sleep since I was in the basement, which while it is a completely finished basement is still kind of eerie, dark, and makes noises. One particular night there had been a South Park Halloween marathon on Comedy Central. This is how much of a pussy I am. Halloween South Park episodes scared me. And I never learn, because I still watch scary movies and listen to ghost stories and everything. It's kind of like being at Great America when I'll be very excited to go on some rides, then, right when the big drop is coming I end up saying, "Oh shit, this wasn't a good idea." The only difference is that Oh shit moment lasts for a couple nanoseconds, whereas being scared from a movie lasts hours. The summer that I was living with huge douchebag provides a good illustration. I had never seen Candyman. When he learned this fact, he insisted that we watch the film that night. I insisted that we shouldn't since it was already night and I prefer to watch these types of movies during the day, so at least there's a buffering zone of daylight. But we watched it in his room, and really it's not that frightening a film, but as I said before, I've been scared by South Park. The worst part was that immediately after the movie ended, I really had to pee. The bathroom in his university-run-kind-of-like-a-townhouse-apartment looks almost exactly like the bathrooms in Cabrini-Green as portrayed in the movie. I've never wanted to pee so fast in my life. When I got over this hurdle, I told huge douchebag, "Look, you made me watch this movie, you should stay up with me so that I'm not scared." He fell asleep pretty much immediately and I stayed up for another couple of hours trying to convince myself that the noises I was hearing were not sinister. I don't like being scared. And you know the funniest/sickest thing? I want to watch that ghost video again.

6.26.2006

Gay Pride and Terrible '80s Songs

I'm listening to Heart's "All I Wanna Do Is Make Love To You" and I'm thinking 'Wow, this takes me back to being a kid living in Oak Lawn with 100.3 or some other adult contemporary rock station playing through the house', which is a fairly pleasant thought, but then I started actually listening to the song and especially the lyrics. This is a truly horrible song. Oh, Heart, Dreamboat Annie is such a good album! What happened?! Sigh.

In better news, I walked in the Gay Pride Parade this weekend in Chicago, which was a lot of fun. I walked as a former employee of Starbucks. Our float was near the very end of the parade, though, so it began as a lot of standing around in the rain (which later cleared up and it was quite a nice day). My friends and I walked up and down Halsted a bit after growing bored with the waiting and collected much free stuff, including beads (one of which I earned), pins (one of which was a 'Kiss Me I'm Irish' button that lit up), and stickers (one of which was a 'Kiss Me Here' sticker that I promptly placed on my right breast. Sadly I received only one kiss all day, which was a pity kiss from a lesbian after another lesbian kissed my friend's sticker--on her right breast. Really, these kissing pins and stickers should be enforced more), etc. When we finally started walking in the parade, we had little packets of free coffee to give away. This soon proved to be both a blessing and a curse. The blessing was that almost everyone loved us and were cheering us loudly. The curse was that they also pretty much mobbed us. You'd think we were giving out crack. People are fucking insane; some grabbed it out of our hands, yelled at us if they didn't get any, flashed for coffee, et al. All in all, it was a fun weekend (except for a bit on Saturday night when I ended up in a parking lot somewhere in the vicinity of Diversey and Clark, which we won't discuss) and a very interesting experience. And I've learned even more now than I knew before that people go cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs...and coffee.

6.21.2006

Ma Vie En Rose

Okay, anyone who wants to be my best friend and make me smile widely until my jaw is sore: there's a book by Mark Z. Danielewski called The Fifty Year Sword. Apparently there are five colors used throughout on quotation marks which indicates what character is speaking. There were only 1000 copies released. 50 of these are signed with a "Z" in one of the five colors and first copy has "MZD" written in ink. I want one. There are a couple of copies being sold on Amazon for about $170 and one on ebay for $89. I'm severely tempted to spend money that I shouldn't. In other Mark Z. Danielewski news, there are open auditions to read parts of his upcoming novel, Only Revolutions. There's going to be an audio project which coincides with the release of the hardcover on September 12th (Peter Scolari's birthday!) and you may be chosen as the voice of one of the characters. [Insert transition here] The little light behind the screen on the radio in my car that allows me to see what station is playing went out a couple months ago. Yesterday, it reappeared. Welcome back little light.

6.20.2006

Chicago

I received an e-mail today addressing me as Professor, which made me laugh, to tell me about the "clicker revolution". It also made me think of the debate of correct terminology, which often comes down to a Northern Illinois vs. Southern (or Central, which is really Southern) Illinois. For instance, do you call it a clicker or a remote? Clicker. Is it pop or soda? Pop. Cardinals or Cubs? Cubs. Although I find it interesting that it's very rare to find a White Sox fan anywhere South of I-80. I got a knock on my door this morning, which was pretty eventful since it is a very rare occasion, and was delivered my copy of Colin Meloy's book on The Replacement's Let It Be. Woot! There was just a clap of thunder that lasted for almost a minute; my first thought: awesome. And, I've learned that Sufjan Stevens is going to be at the Metro on my birthday. So that's a nice gift.

6.16.2006

Charlie

Woot!! In August, I'll be driving cross country with my mom to California. I'm thinking that only one of us will make it back alive. But, I'm going to see Death Cab for Cutie at Berkeley!!! (Jumping up and down)! I now have a pair of not-fucking-around-headphones. Much to my dismay, on my way out the door this morning and on my way to the gym, I discovered my headphones had gone kaput. So I went to campus via Best Buy and picked up some heavy duty new headphones. This is my excitement thus far today. Will more be in store when I watch Colin Firth for 5 hours? We will see.
song recommendation of the moment: "Tell Her This" by Del Amitri
book recommendation of the moment: The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
TV recommendation of the moment: House
movie recommendation of the moment: Twelve Angry Men

6.15.2006

You Can Solve All Your Problems By Freezing Them!

I just had lunch in Subway with Bonnie and Angela and happened upon two blog-worthy events. The first: I saw Philip Seymour Hoffman Sound-Alike. He was leaving as we were in line and we exchanged hellos, with mine being "Hey Philip Seymour Hoffman!" Then, there's a guy working there who looks like Ben Gibbard. And I realize I make that connection with a number of people, but this guy really does and he said that other people have told him this as well. The downfall is he also looks to be about sixteen. But he looks like Ben Gibbard! I should go to Subway more often. In other news, and in terms of something I've been trying to do for a while now, I'm announcing that I'm throwing in the towel. Sigh.

6.14.2006

Mercedes Benz

I've discovered something incredibly fun today. If you are in an elevator, spin around on one foot when you first start to ascend. Just try it, it's really great. Also, I found someone whose voice sounds a lot like that of Philip Seymour Hoffman. The conversation went something like this:
Me: Has anyone ever told you that you sound a lot like Philip Seymour Hoffman?
Philip Seymour Hoffman sound-alike: I don't know who that is.
Me: He's an actor; he just won an Oscar for Capote.
PSHS-A: Oh, I do know him. No, I've never heard that before (looks at me strangely).
Me: (Somewhat sheepishly) Oh, I just thought I'd let you know.

I saw A Prairie Home Companion last night, which I enjoyed and would compare to Nashville if I could say that I've seen Nashville. The best part of the evening, though would have to be the preview for Little Miss Sunshine. On its own it looks like a tender and hilarious film and I am a fan of most every actor involved, but the trailer contained both the Flaming Lips' "The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song" and Sufjan Steven's "Chicago". Now, I would run out and see Deuce Bigalow: Antarctic Gigolo on opening night if said film had these songs in its trailer. So, I'm eagerly anticipating the release of Little Miss Sunshine.

6.12.2006

(This Is) The Dream of Evan and Chan

"I won't let go, I won't let go
even if you say so, oh no.
I've tried and tried with no results.
I won't let go, I won't let go."

There was an angel on the wall,
the one I wanted to buy as
she and I were driving away,
and in my dream you were
in that bar with me as we
discussed the merits of nationality.
But when I opened my eyes,
the angel became a poster
advertising Fat Tire and there
were killjoys on the stools next to me.
I can't avoid telling them
about the other night
and my plans to get better.
I stumbled out and fell
asleep, awoke in a tree
outside your window.
And I could see everything;
Closed my eyes to picture
me in that room with you
and became dizzy when I
felt myself falling back,
thinking before I hit the ground
that I could hear you
calling me.

6.10.2006

You'll have to speak up, I'm wearing a towel.

What I've learned today:
1) I'm horribly out of practice for bowling; this should be remedied.
2) I should not try to bowl while the video for "I Will Follow You Into the Dark" is playing above the lane since I don't pick up the spare and miss part of the video.
3) Dekalb has an arboretum that's actually a pretty nice place that I should go back to sometime soon.
4) One of the episodes of Scrubs (2nd season) has a fantastic Breakfast Club reference that makes me laugh very much.

6.09.2006

MACOF

Most of my day today was spent in cleaning and putting stuff away in my apartment. I've been meaning to clean for a long while now and it's finally done. I also took the extra step of pretty much organizing almost everything I own, so now most things pretty much have their place. I moved here at the end of June last summer; today is the first day everything has been put away. When I walked in my door a couple of minutes ago it was pretty strange, what with all the cleanliness and space and such. I like it. And while doing this today I wore one of the bras I recently purchased which was somewhat exciting since it hooks in the front and this is my first experience with such a device. I'm telling you, my existence is non-stop action. I recommend the new video for Death Cab For Cutie's "I Will Follow You Into the Dark". Go forth and watch.

6.08.2006

Human Behavior

I can finally scratch Annie Hall off of my list of movies-to-see. And I must say that I was a little disappointed with the film, mostly because of its being lauded so heartily by most film critics and associations. I watched Manhattan earlier this year and enjoyed it more. From what I understand, most people fell in love with Diane Keaton and her title character after watching it, but to me she was on the border of almost-excruciatingly-annoying. And while Woody Allen almost always plays the anti-hero, he's usually the somewhat likable anti-hero. I didn't feel especially attached or compassionate for either of the two lovers and found myself not really caring about any of their triumphs, troubles or tribulations. I recognize that none of this is necessary for a great film, and I appreciate Allen's innovative (though I cannot confidently say that I know enough of film history to comment on the degree of originality) style, though the very direct style of narration felt a tad uneven. I'm not sure where Annie Hall should be placed in the lists of great films; all I can say is that it's not my favorite Woody Allen film (having seen a whopping 5 of them). That's my first response anyway. I was also finally able to see Death Cab for Cutie's appearance on the O.C. I looked up which episode they were on and then ordered disc 7 of the second season from Netflix. Not it. Ordered disc 6. Not it. Ordered disc 5. Woot for Death Cab for Cutie! Except that it was very brief (which I knew going in, but I still hoped against all hope) and splintered by scenes with annoying O.C. people and melodrama. I can't really speak of the quality of the show since I've never seen an episode, but I think my inability to watch more than the bits around DCFC's performance speaks for itself. And whoever directed that particular episode really doesn't know how to present a live band. In keeping with DVDs from Netflix which I requested for only a small amount of footage, I watched Sam Rockwell's deleted scene from Jarhead. I saw the film when it came out last October and while I liked it, my immediate reaction was: Sam Rockwell was left on the fucking cutting room floor! It is a small scene that really doesn't add much to the movie, but it's Sam Rockwell and he is fantastic.

In local news, there are technically three routes connecting the parking lot for my apartment building and the street, though one is a one-way entrance (the one-way-ness of this route is often ignored, which causes some disagreement when someone is entering at the same time of someone exiting). There is some sort of construction going on in the front of the building; I haven't investigated enough to determine what exactly) and so both two-way routes are closed off because the sidealk is ripped up. This makes for such a fun time of getting in and out of my parking lot that I just want to send a shout-out to the construction crew for their foresight and timeliness.