4/30/12

"Lodged right in this region here."

I CANNOT get this music out of my head for the life of me. And you know what? Of all the music to have stuck on repeat in your brain, this is not so very terrible to have to suffer through.The "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels" soundtrack is tasteful, well thought out, thematically perfect and hey...it's orchestration, which not many soundtracks (especially not comedies) use anymore.


4/26/12

"You have to find the next version of yourself."

Scarlett Johansson and I are quietly
judging you... 
I have to find the next version of myself. And that version begins with things like Joan Cusack and Chris Farley and the Tron soundtrack. But I'll get to that.

I want to start with something random. I had a life-changing art teacher named Mr. Haas in junior high. One day in our art class, we were doing cloisonne. That's where you cut designs out of metal sheets and then glaze them like pottery. I was digging my heels in about the idea of cutting out and glazing a Nike symbol. (I know...barf.) And Mr. Haas did something awesome, but I'm going to wait until the end of the blog to tell you what he did. Because that's a trick that writers do to make you read things that are way too long.

I can't tell you anything about the movie yet, but I got to see "Marvel's The Avengers" last night. You can read my review of the movie on the Orlando Attractions blog on May 2nd. But what I can tell you is that it's been a long, long time since I had a.) that kind of fun being out and about and b.) enjoyed a movie that much. It was, as my husband has been saying I needed, a "shakabuku". I take you now the the incomparable Joan Cusack in the movie "Gross Pointe Blank" talking to her brother in reality, but not in the movie, Jon Cusack. In this movie, she is the delightfully demented secretary to his professional hitman...

Debi: You know what you need? 
Marty: What? 
Debi: Shakabuku. 
Marty: You wanna tell me what that means? 
Debi: It's a swift, spiritual kick to the head that alters your reality forever. 
Marty: Oh, that'd be good. I think. 




4/10/12

On Finding New Geek Stuff


Sometimes, even I can get tired of my same old obsessions. Usually that just means it's time to dig into an old reliable source of inspiration or switch movie genres for a while. I might go from 80's movies to black and white classics, I might take a break from serious memoirs and get on a biography kick and go totally nuts at the library.

But as I'm getting older, I find that familiar movie and book routines grow stagnant. I need new content, new material and like I mentioned before, new inspirations. So new discoveries are always welcome ones and let's face it, the world is full of plenty of books and movies. 

I can't explain why I need such an intake of material. I think maybe it's because when you do something creative for a living, you just have to refuel your tank or you lose the passion for what you do. You would think it would be the opposite, that doing something creative for a living would fill that void. But it doesn't for me. It just means I need to consume more. But with the limited schedule, I have to consume wisely, because my time is precious.

So I was really happy to make two new (to me) discoveries lately...

1. Battlestar Gallactica - People have been telling me for years that I should watch "Battlestar Gallactica". Maybe it's because that's pretty much the only space-themed series I hadn't watched yet, but part of me felt like I shouldn't watch it just to keep myself from going completely over the edge into "unredeemable nerd" territory. Plus, I was afraid it might make me hate Jim Halpert on "The Office" if I suddenly sympathized with Dwight's deep connection to the TV show.

Then I realized it was far too late for that because A. I entered unredeemable nerd territory the day I got a Star Trek tattoo. and B. I already sympathize with Dwight. We have far too much in common. Except for that whole beet farming thing.

So I finally gave in and started watching the series. And WHOA. No wonder people have been recommending it for so long. It's such a tense show. I love the casting, the almost tribal score and of course...you can't go wrong with the venerable Edward James Olmos. (I don't know why I just referred to him as though he were a judge. It just felt right.) I'm only on episode 5 and I'm going slower than I usually do when I latch onto a new TV series, but work has picked up for me lately. But I actually find myself pouting in the middle of the day thinking about how I wish I could be watching an episode.

UPDATE! Apparently this happens to a lot of people...I give you Portlandia FTW. This is EXACTLY how addictive this show is.




The writing is really what's incredible. Brave choices. Nobody is safe. Quick pacing. It's just...good, good stuff. 

And also....

2. Jonathan Coulton - This is another Pandora-inspired discovery. I've been driving more often lately and I can't stand the radio. So I always listen to Pandora when I'm in the car. I have a couple of stations that are crafted to sheer perfection. My Flight of the Conchords station plays plenty from them, Weird Al, Tenacious D, Dr. Horrible, Monty Python and every once in a while it would try to throw Jonathan Coulton into the rotation and I would be like, "What nonsense is this? I don't know this man...take it away Jeeves."

I'm kind of strict with my Pandora. If my Labyrinth station plays anything other than music from Labyrinth (And it's forever trying to play me "Axel F".) I immediately hit the dislike button. And yes, I have "normal" stations too. Fats Domino, John Williams, Annie Lennox, U2. But the station I seem to listen to the most is the Flight of the Conchords, and Pandora got bossy with me one day. It kept playing Jonathan Coulton, even songs I had previously disliked. It was like, "No really, I want you to give this a try I REALLY think you'll like it." And it turns out, Pandora was right. I think it may be the early signs of worldwide robot domination, but hey, at least we'll all have good tunes to listen to when it goes down.

Jonathan Coulton has a great voice. If he wasn't funny, I think I'd listen to his music anyway. He's got a very Ben Folds Five thing going on vocally-speaking and I dig it.

So what do you do when you need to hit the refresh button on your geekdom, your inspiration or your love of books and movies? How do you find new stuff?