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Posts Tagged ‘Random thoughts’

Why am I compelled to write this stuff? Dunno. Just becuz. Bear with me. There are multiple digressions and/or rants in here, so be warned. Or if you’re looking for perfume stuff, go skim the archives. There’s a perfume review category over there on the side, eat your heart out.

I’ve been rereading my copy of Mr. Darcy’s Diary by Amanda Grange, after having reread Pride & Prejudice. I also reread Daphne du Maurier’s classic Gothic novel Rebecca, and Sally Beaumann’s brilliant but disturbing Rebecca’s Tale. (Are you sensing a pattern here? Do you reread books, and if so, which ones?)

In any case, now I want to go pop in my DVD of Pride & Prejudice – yes, I am a philistine, I like the movie version with Kiera Knightley and the velvet-voiced Matthew MacFadyen, with its near-hectic pace that reminds me of student plays I’ve been in… oddly, I find this aspect interesting, but then The CEO tells me I have near-inhuman tolerance for the stage experience. Wait, where was I? Oh, yes, Matthew Mac and his gorgeous voice and his blue eyes, his prodigious nose (seriously, check out his profile – that is a nose, baby!) and his sturdy thighs (what is it with me and the thighs?). Not to forget that mouth… honestly, that’s the most decadent mouth I’ve seen on a human being since Liv Tyler, and she doesn’t count since she’s a girl.

Speaking of which, it has recently come to my attention that Joan Jett is a lesbian. I know, I know, everybody else already knew, and my just finding out now is a little bit like being the only one without a touch-tone phone: embarrassing, hopeless fuddy-duddy-dom. I can only assume that such information was not widely disseminated when The Runaways (the real ones) were hot – or if it was, I was too young to have picked up on it. At one time I knew all the lyrics to “Crimson and Clover,” but the idea that Joan was singing about a girlfriend was just way over my head at the time. I’ve always kind of liked Joan… I think I knew that she was the kind of person who, beyond her rock-n-roll looks, didn’t care much about what people thought of her, and I thought that was kind of cool. I’d have bought a JJ & the Blackhearts album with my Christmas money in the early 80s, but my mother thought it was subversive, so I picked Barry Manilow instead.

And don’t you dare tell me that there’s no room in the world for both Barry and Joan: of course there is! And for Pat Benatar, the patron saint of Spandex, and A-Ha, and Sarah Brightman, and… oh, there are more, but I’ll stop there. No, one more: Mandy Patinkin. You know, Mandy PatinkinInigo Montoya from “The Princess Bride”? Played Barbara Streisand’s love interest in “Yentl”? Played a doctor in “Chicago Hope” and a profiler on “Criminal Minds” on TV? Yeah, that Mandy Patinkin… he got started acting in Broadway musicals, and he’s got this gorgeous pure tenor voice, as well as a sense of humor. 

So why am I running off at the mouth (fingers) like this? Dunno. But I think it has something to do with NaNoWriMo, the start of which is rapidly approaching. This will be my third year, and I’ve got my novel outlined and planned out, which is a change – and I decided to take it easy on myself and write a romance novel sans cheesy sappiness (oh, don’t worry, there will be mushy stuff – it is, after all, a romance) after the years I have spent saying, “Wow, I can’t believe somebody published this dreck – I could do better with one hand tied behind my back!” Time to put up or shut up, and I’m Puttin’ Up. It’s a Romance Throwdown, people.

This follows the Ambitious Year of NaNo, in which I conceived of the dramatic saga of grad school sweethearts and their tribulations and years apart… and which ultimately I could not figure out how to tell without resorting to the Evil Flashback, or ellipses during which years pass, both of which are stupid. I haven’t abandoned the thing, just shelved it until I figure out how to tell it.

SO. I’d better be clear up front, November posts will probably be thin on the ground, once we’re past A Week of Violets. I have a few reviews in the can, ready to post, and will probably do an abbreviated Scent Diary and a “Howzitgoin at NaNo?” each week, but that’ll be about it until a couple of days into December.

Back to Joan Jett: We’ve got “The Runaways” on our Netflix queue (oh, not for the kids to see, just me and The CEO) because we somehow missed it at the theater… we hardly ever go to movies, even ones we want to see, and those are rare. I have never been a big Kristen Stewart fan, having avoided the “Twilight” movies because I thought the “Twilight” books a perfect example of self-indulgent, juvenile, crappily-written so-called literature (that nonetheless I would have been crazy about at the age of 15, when I had a taste for self-indulgent, juvenile so-called literature). And yet, I must point out that, yes, I did read all of them. I read the first one because all of Bookworm’s friends were reading it, and it would be negligent of me to let her have a book that could engender such huge mania without reading it first myself. I think it was a pretty decent love story that got caught up in wacky, self-indulgent, juvenile, crappily-written trappings. C’mon… leaving aside glittery teenage vampires for the moment, (because I read most of Anne Rice’s books as a young adult and don’t have a leg to stand on here), the ridiculous coincidences and the adulation of the main character alone make it crappy writing. There’s a writerly phrase for the “Main Character as Unique Precocious Genius Prone to Coincidences That Make Her Life Special,”: Mary Sue Syndrome.  You’re Not Supposed to Do That. It’s, hello, crappy writing.  Here’s a link to a Mary Sue litmus test – if you run it for just about any character in Twilight (except maybe Charlie Swann, Bella’s dad), they’ll come out a Mary Sue.  But somehow Stephenie Meyer has purveyed a decent love story, crappily written, dressed up with glittery teenage vampires and muscled teenage werewolves and angsty music, into a BILLION-DOLLAR INDUSTRY.

I really must stop grinding my teeth. End Twilight rant. End digression. Sorry.

Anyway, Kristen Stewart (I’ll get back to Joan, gimme a minnit)… turns out that the girl who played doe-eyed, mopey, passive Bella is actually a seriously good actress. I’ve seen clips of her as Joan. It’s eerie. Her whole body looks different – she’s fierce, aggressive, a ball of energy, self-confident and vulnerable underneath. There’s talent there. This pleases me. It ought to please Ms Bad Girl Stewart, who when she’s not acting is apparently sleeping with/not sleeping with her Twilight costar, chisel-jawed, strangely emotionally-detached British actor Robert Pattinson. (Who, incidentally, has got nothin’ on Matthew MacFadyen.) But I digress yet again.

SO. Finally, back to Joan Jett and her interest in girls. I can’t say I was all that surprised to find out Joan was a lesbian – well, okay, I was surprised for about ten seconds, but it was mostly a sort of “How has this factor escaped me?” surprised, not a “How can this be?” surprised. Sometimes I pick up on stuff, and sometimes I don’t. It took me several months to realize that a high school friend of mine was really more interested in kissing me than in continuing to discuss fantasy novels. Well, she’d probably have gone on discussing Stephen Donaldson after the kissing, but the point was I wasn’t in the least interested in kissing her, and so the friendship disintegrated. I always felt a little hunted and she always felt a little rejected, and eventually we had very little to say to each other.

 The CEO is a little annoyed with me at the moment: I took a certificate of his, where the governor had appointed him to a state board of regulation, to get it framed, and accidentally, um, crumpled it. Oops. It’s not horrible, but you can see the crease. He didn’t fuss much, but I could see he was really disappointed. I feel bad about it. You can’t unbreak an egg and you can’t uncrease an embossed document, even if you’re really really sorry. I’ll have to think up some way to make it up to him. (Call the governor’s office and tell them what happened, and ask for a replacement? That seems a waste of public resources. Ask for a replacement and offer to pay for it? I still think they’ll find it a nuisance. I don’t know what to do.)

I have this really, really annoying cough that’s not going away. Better go buy stock in Ricola, I’m keeping them in business.

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