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Thursday, October 27, 2005

[#] [3]
i was afraid this would happen: i took too long waiting to write the serenity & mirrormask reviews and now i just want them out of my head, regardless of their eloquence or critical capacity. so here are the three shortest reviews about three movies you'll ever see:

less fun than firefly; color scheme is dull; music is uninspiring; girls were unnecessarily girlier & moony over their boys; what happened to the guys w/ the blue hands?; how does simon know anything about river being psychic and since when can he act covertly?; they shafted us on book's background; nooooo waaaasshhhh! whedon, you bastard!

i liked it better than serenity in part because it introduces a new visual vocabulary & music; i listened to the soundtrack for about a week beforehand and now i kind of wish i hadn't.

corpse bride: eh.

[#] [0]
we went pumpkin picking yesterday at sauvie island. this is the third year we've done it, and we were surprised to find so many other people there on a wednesday afternoon! we were in one of their furthest fields and the pickings were slim, but after finding the spot where they must have piled the passable pumpkins, we walked away with two modest globes that will make for good carving tomorrow. i also picked up lots of little pumpkins and a butternut squash to try for soup.

we found the loudest tree i've ever heard: dozens of birds chattering in an old dead tree. the geese were busy flying away from the grey october skies, but they missed the double rainbow that seems to appear each year we go to pick pumpkins. instead of driving straight home, we drove as far as the road would take us, past the sauvie island wildlife preserve & the clothing-optional beaches.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

[#] [1]
michaelmas & i went to steve's today to watch all these movies for his annual halloween movie marathon. in addition to the inimitable jesus christ vampire hunter, badly dubbed & filmed in a dreams of the witch house sort of way, we watched rodan, spongebob, sean of the dead and the haunting. there was pizza & leftover birthday cake from philip. it was a looonnng time to sit watching movies, but halloween only comes once a year! :)

speaking of birthday cake, michael's father & my father share the same birthday. happy birthday!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

[#] [5]
i had a huge influx of comment spam over the last few days and so *sigh* i turned on word verification. i also made it a lot easier to see if i even have any freakin' comments: notice the [0] to the right of the title, the one next to [#] (the permalink). YOU have the POWER to change this number! yes, YOU! with a tiny taptapclick! as mr. clarke would say, any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. :)

[#] [3]
tonight, the moon is wearing a bright, beautiful ring with mars as its jewel.

Monday, October 17, 2005

[#] [0]
auugghhhh! there are EIGHT MILLION bugs hanging out on the front of our house! there are slightly fewer than that on the back of the house. some are ladybugs, but most of them are that very common red-rimmed beetle thing that i wish i could google but i don't know its name. there a couple of very fat & happy spiders, too. it's fairly disturbing, actually.

update: i tried hosing them off the house, which wasn't very effective because they just kept returning a few minutes later. but the guy who came to repair our upstairs toilet immediately knew they were box elder bugs and it looks like they'll eventually go away on their own. i'm glad the studio faces north, though, because trying to enter or exit the house is a little creepy. and i don't quite understand why theyy picked our house to flock to, because other houses in the area are much less affected, and our house has no trees at all. hosing them led me to finally try looking for wasp nests, and i found a largish one under our eaves that refused to budge despite repeated spraying with two different types of nozzles and a ladder. our last hope is the 14-foot ladder that i wasn't feeling like tackling today, thanks.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

[#] [0]
on thursday, after dinner at "sal's famous italian kitchen," michaelmas & i attended the portland center stage production of "under the lintel," a play which has a lot going for it:

1. its only character is a librarian
2. ephemera!
3. big questions about why we're here and what makes us alive
4. a slight hint of urban fantasy
5. a charming performance by its one performer
6. fairly clever premise and staging
7. sign language interpretation

however, as glad as i was to see an actual play on an actual stage, and while it wasn't displeasing, i found myself relatively unengaged. in essence, i think it would have been better as a short story than a 1-man show. i know exactly how it could be written; the play wouldn't take much adaptation to be a 10-page first-person narrative. i don't know if this is true for all 1-man shows, but there was a certain amount of... -investment- missing than when you have a show where two people aren't saying everything and it's up to you to discover what the middle story is (like "fiction," which i saw w/ leopoldo in seattle last year). 1-person shows are by nature lectures, and are spaced to fill time. another audience member may have been correct when he wrote, "Perhaps what put me off was the lack of range. Most of the show was the exact same tone - emotion, volume, subject matter, i.e., wacky guy on stage reeling off random information. I found myself asking, 'If you were to take out any five minute section of dialogue, would the overall story be impacted?' I guess I stopped listening because I did not feel any specific line was crucial to whatever story was emerging."

i think michaelmas liked it quite a bit, though. the best plays leave me asking "what would i do?" or illuminate an obscure or maddening element of human interaction. but inflated theatre prices make for inflated performance expectations, and for $45 a ticket (yikes!), i would have hoped for more than a pleasant but ultimately benign evening. i think theatre tickets are insanely priced (even when i had a full-time job, $90 for two people not including dinner would have been tough to take), but the best part is that people don't talk at quiet bits in the theatre the way they do in movies. and very good theatre is riveting, captivating, breathless.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

[#] [5]
must write these things down now because i have more to come...

i was so tempted to buy a nano i returned to the apple store to ask some questions. fortunately, my attempt was denied because a) my dentist doesn't accept the insurance i now have so i had to pay $133 out of what i had thought might apply to a nano and b) it requires usb2, which would require a laptop upgrade i'm not prepared to make yet.

i forgot to mention that when sven & i went to pioneer place i bought a wonderful smooth and sculpted black ammonite to use as an artist's way talking stone. but now i regret reading uzamaki because my former adoration of spirals is tainted with unease.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

[#] [3]
so i'm finally out of media dep, if you don't count the 3-day descent into madness i spent at the hp lovecraft film festival. but now i have catchup to do: over 250 blog posts (thanks, rss) and 50 emails i need to reply to. so be kind to me if i'm slow for the next week or so.

today sven & i dashed through the new contemporary art wing at the portland art center. it was strangely unsatisfying, especially as you must enter via a tunnel from the other building, which gives you much less of a sense of walking into a neat new building. perhaps the two floors we didn't get to would have held more secrets: its format was archeological, so as you ascended in floors, you rose through decades of work.

we also made a stop for sven to meet the apple store. mmmmmm, nano! very tempting, even as just an auxillary brain-like object (especially w/ voodoopad!). and i still drool at the wafer-thin sony cybershot. alas, no new imacs w/ the built-in isight, which i was really wanting to see.

and i am surprised to find myself writing about my former life, but apparently blackboard & webct just merged! didn't see that coming! i don't mean to be snarky, but they are both lumbering & clumsy: if webct is mothra and blackboard is godzilla, what hideous lovechild will they create? glad i won't be around to find out. :)

Monday, October 10, 2005

[#] [0]
october is one of my favoritest months! this is the time of year for the lovecraft festival, candy corn, the portland open studio tours, pumpkin picking and carving, and halloween (though i have never been a great costumer). rosh hoshana is about sweetness and forgiveness. we also celebrate the birthdays of confessor, leeann, philip, michael's father & my own (who even share the same birthday!). this year, there's also a special apple announcement wednesday, mirrormask opens friday and there's supposed to be a partial solar eclipse monday. the leaves fall and rustle, it rains moodily, the winter constellations are beginning to be visible at a reasonable hour. isn't october grand? :D

btw, sven had a great premiere this weekend at the lovecraft festival (the first thing shown, in fact!). now we can hardly wait another two years for the actual movie! patti smith was an interesting presence this year at the festival: she read some poetry, including one of her own songs (which was really quite riveting). she also read a fascinating series of 1-line reviews lovecraft wrote about ymcas across the nation, most of which used words like "delapidated," "horrible," and "dismal" -- until he got to portland, whose ymca was "immaculate, artistic" and another praiseworthy word i forget. if the festival wasn't recording the mike output onto tape, they should be kicking themselves, because she improvised a terrific song about coming to portland and the film festival which ended with "it's a great life." and wouldn't that be the coolest extra to include in a dvd? (btw, be sure to send her chocolate-covered yellow entemann's donuts, or offer them as a snack at the next festival, okay, guys?)

the russian house had an open house sunday, so we finally got a chance to see it; they have an apartment downstairs which would probably not make a great studio, and the strangest hidden office-in-a-closet, but it was still worth seeing. they have the best back yard in the area (which is apparently a divideable lot, which means someone could build -another- house there if they wanted. yeek).

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

[#] [2]
ack! tomorrow begins media deprivation! man, it doesn't seem to matter how many times i facilitate artist's way, media dep always sneaks up on me. for our viewers just tuning in, media deprivation is an artist's way exercise in chapter 4 that means i'm not supposed to read ANYTHING for a week. i'm also not supposed to listen to music, watch TV, see movies, etc. the idea here is that if you briefly stop trying to fill yourself with the voices of others, you'll find your own -- eventually you'll either create something or do something productive for yourself. it's an intense experience, both frustrating and rewarding.

i don't go as far as not reading -anything- because email is such a big part of my day-to-day life, and some of that email relates to artist's way or sven. but i am vigilant about it and i question myself a lot, which usually means i read it to determine if an action needs to be taken on it, and i'll respond or act when appropriate, but otherwise i let it lie around for a week and i don't return to it like i am wont to do. and i try veryveryvery hard not to read blogs. tv is easy, music is much harder -- and this term i have to play a "get out of media dep free" card for the lovecraft festival, because it's something i love so much and it's not reschedulable.

Monday, October 03, 2005

[#] [2]
happy new year! sven & i celebrated rosh hoshana w/ jalex, mari & michelle, then dashed off to meet up w/ michaelmas, philip & teena at neil gaiman's reading. the church held almost 700 people but it was surprisingly cozy. sven & i got there after everyone had been let in so everything was civil & mellow, though after neil walked out there -was- the obligatory woman who yelled, "we love you, neil!" *sigh* but the woman in front of us had pink dreadlocks, three of which had metal nuts slipped on as if they were pink fuzzy bolts. :)

neil read from his new book promoting anansi boys and held a brief q&a session. philip, teena & michaelmas left immediately afterwards because they hadn't had dinner yet, but sven & i stuck around a while longer to watch neil at work, signing sandman statuettes and drawing canine figures in copies of "wolves in the walls." i had expected him to be a little frayed around the edges after signing so many books lately, but he was well-spoken and friendly and would shake hands or even hug people. they called people to the stage in batches of 50 based on the raffle ticket number you were given at the door; philip had an early one but gave me his before he left and before -we- left i gave it to michelle's boyfriend brian, who we just happened to spot in the crowd. sven wrote a brief note on the back of it: "shield & zoe say hi! -- from his brother, sven."

(yes, i'm a sucker for a boy w/ a british accent; i even had to include the really blurry photo. look! i think you can tell he's smiling!)

btw, did anyone else notice that pix has a new (additional) location? now there's classic pix and north pix! there'll be a grand opening saturday, alas, during the hp lovecraft festival....

Sunday, October 02, 2005

[#] [1]
i made the best french toast -ever- today. carl managed to talk us into seeing serenity again, but i'm still not blogging about it. i shouldn't be drinking soda so late. i still have a cold. i'm glad portland is a town in which i can wear fuzzy, striped knee-high socks.

that is all.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

[#] [0]
i just watched barbarella for the first time. whew! glad that's over. ;) also, it's been a week and i guess i'm never going to get aorund to writing anything substantial about these other events, so it's worth mentioning that last week i volunteered to deal w/ the food for the art show opening of my job club facilitator. sven & i also went to a writing workshop at the japanese garden last week.

oo, oo! and doug sent me stickers for his upcoming book, last week's apocalypse! i'll probably stick them around town in unexpected places or hand them out at art events.

[#] [0]
i was supposed to go to the AOCC today but instead of getting up at 5 a.m., i decided to recouperate my sick self at home: sleeping in, doing laundry, making potato soup and trying to fix this really frustrating ical issue that upgrading to tiger broke. i'm even foregoing the stumptown comics fest, which sven, who is feeling better, is at right now. but that's okay: as an extra special bonus, i got a thunderstorm out of it! yeeee!