grrgoyl: (Simply Severus)
I fully intended to wait two or three weeks to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 2 as per my usual. Then [livejournal.com profile] kavieshana talked me into opening weekend (she tried to talk me into a midnight sneak preview, and I informed her that the ability to do things like that and go to work a few hours later is the first thing to go when you get older). I bought a 9:45 am Sunday ticket online, and immediately a wave of excitement and anticipation crashed over me so powerfully I instantly wanted it to be Sunday and wondered why I ever thought I could wait two or three weeks.

I wasn't looking for 3D, in fact was rather opposed to the idea since seeing Kung Fu Panda 2, which was an enormous waste of time. It seems like now the format has caught on, moviemakers think they can make the first few scenes really eye-popping and their work is done. I did want IMAX though, and unfortunately my IMAX theater only offered a 3D option. So with online fees, my ticket came to $19 -- yes, that's admit one. Only for Harry, and I think that will do it for my moviegoing activity this summer.

I considered it anti-asshole insurance, especially after I shared the Kung Fu Panda showing with only six other people, one of whom was a mother with her two little girls who played with her phone through maybe a quarter of the movie, until I waited for a quiet moment and told her to put it away, which thankfully she did, but I still shouldn't have had to say anything.

If I owned a theater, since I probably couldn't confiscate phones at the door, I would install call buttons at every seat so you could summon an usher to deal with this shit, because I don't think it's fair that I have to miss the movie I paid for to troop all the way out to the lobby to get someone. And, if I owned a theater, I would then put a life ban on the offender. Something punitive really needs to be done to these people.

Anyhoo. I waited with barely restrained anticipation all weekend. Every time I thought about it, I swear I felt my heart beat faster. From poking around online, there seemed to be a LOT of murmurings about Snape, but I couldn't be sure if that wasn't just because I was looking for them. Then it opened in wide release and people in the Snarry communities immediately started putting out short stories describing what seemed to be every Snape scene in the movie, so I had to avoid those.

Despite working the night before, I was up at 8 am and raring to go (please note the difference between doing the fun thing the night before followed by work, and working followed by the fun thing). The theater opened at 9:15, so I got there about 5 after. And this was the line that had already formed:



These were ticketholders too. I could count on one hand the people who actually went to the box office. But fortunately the theater was very efficient, with two ticket takers, so we all got inside reasonably quickly.

I made a beeline for the top of the theater, to my favorite back row, which was already mostly filled up. I sat next to two guys, who seemed straight despite not leaving the requisite empty seat between them. Perhaps they were that considerate, realizing the theater would most likely be full. They went for snacks and returned with soft pretzels. But for the occasional drag of a straw through a lid hole, they didn't make a peep as they ate. Then as soon as the previews began, they instantly put their phones in their pockets and left them there. I could have kissed them both...except for the suspect lack of the straight-guy seat divider.

I'm happy to say that I didn't see a single phone during the whole movie (although the IMAX theater has such steep seats that I don't know if it would be as noticeable anyway). The audience was interactive and really into it, cheering at the right parts and applauding at the end -- funniest of all, as the lights went down to signal the end of the previews and the start of the film, a guy down to the right let out an appreciative "Ohhhhhh yeah....", making everyone laugh.

It was a lot like how [livejournal.com profile] kavieshana described the midnight showings -- full, but full of people who damn well were there to see the movie. It was easily one of my most enjoyable theater experiences, considering the size of the crowd. Why can't every audience be like this?

Well, enjoyable except for the damn 3D glasses, which sucked up to cling to my sweaty face despite my best efforts to make them perch at the end of my nose. The 3D at least was worth it. It was more the "through the window" depth of field Avatar 3D rather than the "jumping out at you" kind. Plus the 3D puts cool glints in everyone's pupils that really make them look more alive (whether it was actually shot in IMAX, however, is debatable. I didn't get that "wow, that picture is HUGE!" feeling I normally do).

As for the movie itself, well, that's going to take some interaction from you, gentle reader. ::Now with 20% more spoilers!!:: )

I knew the parking lot would be a horror show to escape if I didn't move quickly, so the second the first end title came up I bolted from the theater. I was among the first outside -- along with the jerkface who pinned my car in with his Jeep so tight that, had he not been leaving with me, I literally could have only gotten in through the passenger door. I couldn't resist a "nice parking" comment (he very wisely didn't say anything, although an apology wouldn't have gone amiss), but luckily for him I was so euphoric from the movie I wasn't nearly as irate as I normally would be.

Then all my anger dissipated when I sat at a light waiting to get onto the highway, and the car next to me had the window rolled down. Inside I could hear a little girl breathily explaining to her father (presumably), "But in the book, THIS happened and THAT happened..." It made me smile.

So, for everyone who couldn't care less about Harry, it's done! Well, until the DVD release at least....
grrgoyl: (Snotter)
Time again for some movie reviews.

The opening act: Paranormal Entity I spent the first ten minutes of this movie trying to figure out if it was a spoof of Paranormal Activity. It still might be.

::My review at least doesn't suck up as much of your life as actually watching the movie:: )

An unpleasant waste of an afternoon. The cable access version of Paranormal Activity. These are the nicest things I can say about it.

~*~

Headliner:

While in California, I did break a 6-month drought of theater-going to catch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (or, as a geeky fanboy requested when he bought his ticket, "Harry Potter Seven Part One," enunciating clearly so as not to be mistakenly sold a ticket for Part Two, which will be released next July); yes, money is tight, but there's always room in my budget for Harry.

Of course, I ended up also paying for Nancy, which happened without her even asking. It's just always the assumption that Nancy has no money, and she makes no effort to dispel that assumption. Frankly, I would rather have spent that money on a second theater outing for myself.

Amy had confessed to me before the trip that she had only read and seen the movies up to Order of the Phoenix, and that she couldn't remember most of it, maybe should brush up a bit. "Well, you've got a week," I told her. "Put the kid in daycare and get to work."

She didn't, and it wasn't until the lights went down that I hurriedly thought to fill her in on some of what she missed. I only got as far as "Snape killed Dumbledore and we don't know why" (OMG SPOILER SORRY). Then halfway through the first scene it occurred to me she might need to know what a Horcrux was, but when I tried to whisper it to her she shushed me. Fine. Enjoy this movie where you'll have no idea what's going on.

I myself had already re-read the entire series in preparation for the movie, so I could make an informed judgment. ::And here it is:: )

The movie IS sort of slow, compared to the others. It very much feels like a transition, a placeholder before the real finale. I loved it, but I can see where lesser fans (or casual viewers, like Ryan who hasn't read a single book) might be left feeling a bit WTF??

However, I got a solid reminder of why I hate going to the theater anymore. Bad enough there was a row of teenagers way in the back, one of whom evidently could only follow every plot progression by announcing it loudly to the rest of us. But halfway through, I became aware of a full-fledged conversation going on behind me. I turned in my seat to see two teenage girls cupping a cellphone between them and talking at great length to the caller. I stared and stared and stared. Finally one of them noticed me and asked haughtily, "Can I help you?" I just kept staring coldly, didn't even blink. They slowly ended the call and put the phone away, with a disbelieving "Sheesh...."

Yes. I'm the rude one. I spent the rest of the movie ready for a confrontation at the end, but they either decided against it or, more likely, their tiny attention spans had forgotten the incident entirely.

~*~

Not sure what the third act is called:

Finally, a movie that I almost went to jail for downloading online: Catfish. Everyone will probably remember that it was released shortly before The Social Network with the promotion "Everyone who uses the internet must see this movie." No?

Well, it's a shame, because I've seen them both and think Catfish is better.

::More if you dare:: )
grrgoyl: (sirius black)
I've come full circle in my conversational Spanish/English. Last weekend I stopped in the grocery store after my shift, bundled up in two coats, gloves and scarf. I walked past a señorita who asked me pleasantly, "How are joo?" "I'm good, thanks" I smiled at her. She regarded me for a moment and added, "Is cold!" I laughed, though she probably didn't know why. "Yes, it's very cold!"

Weather: The Great Cultural Unifier.

~*~

It should come as a surprise to absolutely no one (except perhaps [livejournal.com profile] kavieshana, who I thought knew me much better) that Harry Potter: Order of the Phoenix is already in my possession. I waited all day yesterday like it was Christmas Eve for midnight to come, whereupon I made my usual pilgrimage to Walmart (yes, I know Walmart is the Antichrist. But they're the only ones open 24 hours who don't lock up new releases and make clerks with keys frustratingly scarce in the middle of the night).

I was slightly anxious when there was no pallet of 1000 copies greeting me by the registers, but I proceeded to Electronics, refusing to be deterred. There I found a nervous young salesclerk with already one couple staring at him, waiting for I'm not sure what. He asked me what I needed and he immediately walked over to a stack of unopened boxes where there happened to be one two-disc special edition perched on top, as if it was just waiting for me. I was excited until he grabbed it and then set it down beside him on the register. What?

It turns out Walmart has a new policy where brand-new releases can only be paid for in Electronics. It makes little sense to me; it seems that people would be just as likely to steal them a week later as they would be the first day of release. What makes even less sense is instituting this policy and then leaving a low level clerk with no authority to open his own register alone in the department, which is what we were all waiting for 10 minutes later. I felt vindicated that I wasn't alone -- the previously mentioned couple were also there for the HP, as well as a man and woman who came up behind me. As we continued to wait, he asked them what they needed. When the woman was offered more than one choice in versions (widescreen, fullscreen, special edition, two-disc special edition, plus the Walmart exclusive with a set of bookmarks) she asked, "Ummmm, what's the special edition?" Good God. What are you doing there at 12:01 if you don't know exactly which you want? Amateurs.

But got it I did. It has a sparkly, vaguely 3D cover which only underscores the disappointing lack of a 3D ending, but I love it nevertheless. The bonus features, paltry though they may be, will have to wait for another day, as I could barely finagle use of the TV long enough to watch the movie as it was. This third viewing of it cements it as my new favorite of the series, at least until HBO starts playing it three times a day and I get as sick of it as I am of Goblet of Fire. But I love Harry's emo haircut more with each viewing. I'm also not sure if it's our Aquos or the luxury of rewinding as often as I please, but it seemed Snape's Worst Memory lasted a LOT longer than it did in the theater (even has its own handy bookmark on the menu) and looked a lot clearer. However, I reflected yet again more bitterly about how we spend so much damn time lingering on Hagrid's brother Grawp, who ultimately is nothing in the rest of the story, while Snape is added seemingly as an afterthought in the film. But I guess I have to face that I'll never be happy with the amount of Snape content until the movie version of "Hogwarts: The Potions Master Chronicles" is released.

~*~

Speaking of the Potions Master, I think I've found an Alan Rickman movie that I don't have the slightest urge to buy or bootleg. Help! I'm a Fish! is a crappy, low budget animated movie made in Denmark. I'd seen clips of it on YouTube, but was confused about the fact that it had already been released because the title had been changed to A Fish Tale in America. I found it on Netflix and gave it a look-see.

Fly, his little sister Stella and his fat, dorky cousin Chuck go fishing and stumble across the hidden lair of Professor MacKrill (voiced by Python Terry Jones), who is conducting experiments on turning humans into fish. There's nothing sinister about Professor MacKrill or his research (though being a children's movie, no one ever asks why humans would WANT to turn into fish); in fact, he's kind of a ditz, and can only remember the necessary ingredients of his potion by singing a really, really gay song. Naturally disaster wastes no time in striking, and the children are all turned into fish and lost at sea. They have 48 hours to take the antidote before the transformation is permanent.

But of course the antidote has gone missing in the ocean, and is found by Joe (Rickman), who drinks it and develops human intelligence. This just cracks me up: Joe, evil fish genius. Joe. Why not Mike? Or Frank? Joe. Moving on. Joe immediately starts doling out the potion (but in measured doses so the other fish aren't TOO smart) and becomes their leader. The primary use they put this intelligence to seems to be constructing a vast assembly line to dispense more antidote and nothing else. Alan et.al. sing an even gayer song (in the style of Jeremy Irons' Scar in Lion King) extolling Joe's virtues (LOL! Joe). This being a children's movie, it's never explained how making fish more intelligent will result in world domination. I guess just the idea of fish taking over the world is frightening enough all on its own.

Blah blah blah, the kids go through all kinds of obstacles to make more antidote and get back to the Professor's lab so they don't return to human form on the bottom of the ocean. Unfortunately Joe follows them, but is easily outwitted by Fly, who challenges him with a series of brainteasers until he drinks so much antidote that he becomes fully human and drowns. They do say that pride comes before the fall. As he floats lifelessly away, we can see a little flash of Joe's naked bum, which isn't nearly as titallating as Alan's.

There's a happy ending, but what really cracked me up was the end credits (punctuation mine). ALAN RICKMAN as Joe! TERRY JONES as Professor MacKrill! Then, "Additional Dialogue" covers everyone else, who were actually the main players. I thought this ripped off Finding Nemo (there's an Australian-accented shark and one scene with prominent angler fish) but evidently this was made 3 years before Nemo. I think they might have a good chance at a lawsuit.
grrgoyl: (snape trelawney)
Rebecca and I went last night to Order of the Phoenix in IMAX 3D. Oh my god. If you have an IMAX theater near you, run, don't walk, to see this version. Only the last 20 minutes are 3D (basically from the thestral ride through the battle at the Ministry), but these scenes that were merely dazzling on a normal screen become an out-of-body experience in 3D. The thestral's head stretches out to rest in your lap. Lucius Malfoy's wand goes right up your nose. And there's a scene with glass shattering in slow motion where each individual shard hangs in front of you in stark relief.

Unfortunately the technology isn't advanced enough to eliminate the need for dorky glasses. Some mooks kept theirs on for the entire film. One guy sat through 118 minutes of 2D and left to use the bathroom at the exact second the 3D kicked in (a little glasses symbol flashes at the bottom of the screen). If you can't hold it for longer than 2 hours, it may be time for a Stadium Pal™.

Upon leaving the theater Rebecca and I both had the same question: would the DVD have a home 3D option? She thought it possible, based on the fact that her little sister owns a 3D Barbie DVD.

It turns out [livejournal.com profile] metatronis was 100% correct. I did enjoy the movie much more the second time. Whether it was because I knew what to expect so I could relax properly, or because I'd already experienced all the disappointment, I'm not sure. But this time around I really got into the atmospheric music, the maturity of the acting and the smaller details I missed the first time, like the closeup shot in the foreground of the troll leg umbrella stand, or Parvati and Lavender being the only ones crying when Trelawney is sacked. Now it's just a matter of waiting the endless months until DVD release.
grrgoyl: (methree)
Finished! This is the first of the books I read in only one day. I'll talk about it later, naturally under a cut cuz that's how I roll.

First though, I've got some pretty strong feelings on this subject. I'll cut this too since it ain't gonna be pretty or short. ::Open Letter to the Hatahs:: )

There. Now that we have that unpleasantness out of the way, ::the tale of how I acquired my copy:: )

::What I thought:: )
grrgoyl: (snarry imaginary)
The Search for John Gissing: Arrived. It came via DHL which, you'll remember, isn't my first choice in a delivery agent but it wasn't up to me. After yesterday they're even less of a choice. I toodled on over to the tracking site to check its progress, and you can imagine my astonishment when I saw it was marked "Delivered" and "Signed for" already. WhatWhatWhat???!!?! I immediately headed to the mailbox only to discover it sitting on my doorstep. Which means someone climbed 3 flights of stairs and put it there (or tossed it over the railing from below) but couldn't be bothered to ring the doorbell and deliver it properly. What is wrong with them? This isn't brain surgery. "Abandoned" is not a synonym for "delivered." Thank god it wasn't something truly valuable like, say, a passport.

Passport: Arrived! Just when I was ready to lie and claim I was traveling sooner than I was. I can't help but think it's no coincidence that my earliest date of travel on the application was July 23, which if it were would be cutting it very close indeed. I had hoped its delivery would coincide serendipitously with a sudden drop in fares, but no dice. Amusingly, the passport was packaged with a pamphlet cheerfully proclaiming, "With a U.S. Passport, the world is yours!" because you're an AMERICAN and therefore foreigners must defer to YOU. Or so I preferred to interpret it in my current bitterly anti-American state of mind.

Creepy old neighbor Louis: Is still spending every day out on his balcony. Which I don't care about except every time I pass the window, he's looking straight up into our house. When it gets this hot, I don't much care to wear clothing, and I don't want to don a shirt just to walk around my living room. So he gets a little peepshow every now and then, which I guess is incentive enough to keep him staring hopefully. Ewww. But when it gets this hot, my comfort takes first priority, even if it's giving an old man his jollies.

Speaking of crazy neighbors, I got cornered into a conversation with The Alcoholic, who can't believe Tery and I don't use our air conditioning every single day (we don't break down until it tops 100 degrees). She uses hers at the first hint of mugginess, she told me proudly. A bigger sweatphobe I've never seen. I explained that we're New Englanders and used to 100 degrees plus 95% humidity, so it really doesn't bother us that much. I gave the excuse that we're nervous about running out of freon and needing it serviced. 5 minutes after we returned to our respective homes, she called me excitedly, telling me to check the user manual for our AC unit. Hers doesn't specifically mention freon servicing, so she reckons it doesn't use freon. Yes. She believes she has the world's first totally environmentally friendly air conditioner, that she bought 10 years ago. I didn't waste time trying to correct her, as it's not likely to change her usage anyway. But this didn't do much to raise her intelligence in my estimation.

Harry Potter: Finished "Half-Blood Prince" (again) and am more excited than ever for "Deathly Hallows." Meanwhile Tery is more stubbornly in denial than ever. We were talking about something and she made the comment, "Whatever, it's just Harry Potter." She HATES that Harry is so popular because she is, as my tag so aptly describes her, a joy-sucking robot. Which is perhaps for the best, so we aren't fighting over the book when it arrives. I'm holing up all day Sunday and Monday, NO INTERNET/NO SPOILERS whatsoever, then Monday night plan to see Order of the Phoenix in IMAX with my friend Rebecca. I also expect to gloat my face off to her silly sister-in-law, who refuses to believe that Snape is anything other than pure, unadulterated evil -- no complex motives, no hidden layers, just straight up exactly what Jo has made him seem to be. That will be fun.

Gideon: Has an adrenal tumor (common among ferrets). Unfortunately the gland in question is wrapped by the vena cava so it's a very complicated surgery. Tery brought him to the premier vet specialist in Colorado, Dr. Fitzgerald:

Gideon's brush with celebrity


Some people might recognize him from an Animal Planet show called "Emergency Vets." He didn't want to do the operation at first, until he met Giddy and had to admit he was a great little guy and worth trying to save. He's still strong and healthy enough that he shouldn't have any complications. We'll see. Fortunately too Dr. Fitzgerald's hospital recently joined the VCA family so Tery can use her 70% employee discount.

That's all. Internet radio silence begins Friday evening just to make double sure to avoid spoilers. Will resume communication Tuesday morning. Over and out.
grrgoyl: (snapecast)
queue


You might think, as we did, that this was the line for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. You would be, as we were, dead wrong. No, this was the line for the sneak preview of Hairspray, we were relieved to discover after mistakenly waiting in it for only 10 minutes or so.

I'm going to pass on Hairspray. John Travolta in a fat suit AND drag is a bit too disturbing for me, thanks.

So anyway, we saw it: "we" being Ryan, myself and Ryan's co-worker Kristin (John was too tired to join us. A mixed blessing, as it saved us a no doubt tedious trip downtown). Ryan and Kristin have still resolutely refused to crack open any of the books themselves, so they were mercifully spared what was to follow.

::I'm not saying I hated the movie...:: )

I'd like to think I'll enjoy it more a second time when I'm not stressing over what to expect. It was wonderfully atmospheric, dark and mature, it just seemed to have the heart cut out of it. And I need to stop going with people who haven't read the books. 3/4 of the way through, Kristin leaned way over into my space and asked if Luna was Draco's sister. And then wouldn't take no for an answer, convinced she'd predicted some huge plot twist (she also swore up and down that Arthur Weasley died in Goblet of Fire. Oh dear, oh dear). Neither of them were particularly stoked to hear that David Yates (the director) has already signed on to do the next film.


In totally related news, just when you thought this week couldn't get any more Harryrific, Telanu has posted the final chapter of the Tea Series. Yep, the Snarry that started it all for me. It will give me something to look forward to after turning the last page of "Deathly Hallows," since I'm quite certain Jo won't give my boys the ending I'd prefer.
grrgoyl: (snape trelawney)
My weekend: A summary by Miss Elaineous

Not much excitement at the kennels, though I did resolve after the staff meeting to stop skating by doing as little as possible and go back to being the best damn overnight tech I could be. *in the style of Superman comics* I gave injections! I changed fluid bags! I hand fed sick animals! I temped ill-tempered cats! I filled out medical charts! I filled prescriptions! I swept! I mopped! I made surgical packs! Then on Saturday I was so sore and exhausted all day that I remembered why I was skating by doing as little as possible.

This little guy has been here for a couple of weeks and is doing much better:

PeeWee


He's such a good little puppy. When you open his door he runs (clumsily) up to you and wants only to be cradled in your arms while he licks your chin. Then when you have to leave to do something else, he quietly returns to his little bed and goes back to sleep. A dog that's only needy on your terms: hope he stays that way.

They thought he was a dump at first -- the number left by the owners was disconnected. They finally called when the bill was in the thousands to check on him, demanding to know why they hadn't been called sooner (it evidently never occurred to them to call us). Since he's still there, I guess he is now officially a dump (one of the techs wants him so there's a happy ending). Apparently this happens all the time according to Tery: people are really stupid enough (or think that the hospital staff is) to abandon a critically ill dog, pleading poverty, then call back when the dog's been fixed up thinking they can get him back for the price of an adoption fee. Tery's response is always, "No problem. It will cost $700 (or whatever the bill is) to adopt him." People are asshats.

~*~

I'm really cursing my luck. We've lived here for 4 summers now and I've never really taken full advantage of our balcony. Now that I have my wondrous new hammock and a full two days off every week, all our neighbors are crawling out of the woodwork. There's a unit across the way and down a floor owned by Louis, an eccentric old man who doesn't own a stick of furniture but instead has lots of weird sculpture thingies made of natural materials like rocks and scrap lumber, who we haven't seen in more than a year. This past weekend he suddenly returned from who-knows-where, bringing with him a daughter (?) and young children. They spend the majority of their time on the balcony, talking, laughing, yelling and generally destroying the peace and quiet. You tell me the universe doesn't have an especially sadistic sense of humor.

~*~

While searching for Harry Potter clips on YouTube featuring Snape (so far Conan has shown the only one, I've been watching Dan Radcliffe's interviews all week), I stumbled across this trailer:



It was made in 2001 and the filmmakers have been fighting ever since to get it released. Just this week they gave up and released it privately with their own money (can be bought here). Plus Janeane Garofalo...how can you go wrong? I now await its arrival with every bit as much excitement as I did Snowcake, because Alan gets shamefully few opportunities to flex his comedic muscles (but trust me, they're there).

~*~

Speaking of Harry Potter, tonight we're going: "we" being myself, Ryan and RYAN'S NEW BOYFRIEND JOHN. Thanks to a series of monetary snafus, I'll probably be paying for the boys, putting to rest the apparent myth that gay men have gobs of disposable income. Unless, as Tery postulated, all their money goes to buying lube by the case at Costco *juvenile snicker* I'm spending the rest of the week hurrying to finish "Half-Blood Prince" for the second time before the release of "Deathly Hallows" this weekend. This might be the closest I've come to O.D.'ing on Harry.....
grrgoyl: (ewan stoli)
This is the final chapter in my eBay Hammock Buying Saga, which I know no one cares about, but I need to save this shit for future reference.

Guess the seller didn't take too kindly to my followup feedback after their outlandish claim of shipping next day (my exact words were "Paid June 26. Shipped July 3. Which calendar are you using?"). So they punished me by leaving me a neutral feedback saying only "Thanks." Which is patently unfair -- the only way I could be a better buyer was if I paid before the auction actually ended. This is the way most sellers do business though, and it really, really twists my panties. By all rights feedback should be left for the buyer once payment is received (which is how I handle my buyers). But sellers withhold feedback, making it contingent on receiving their feedback, so they can retaliate with this level of immaturity should the buyer be unhappy. It's normally courteous to clear up any dissatisfaction before feedback is left, which I tried to do. If my comments came out of left field for this seller, that means either they didn't read the complaint I sent or they thought I was only joking.

Whatever. I was going to follow up their feedback for me but I don't want this to escalate into a stupid war (too late?) that will only make me think how much I hate this fucking seller every time I look at my hammock. Just take note, eBayers: Collectionsetc is the user name. Sure, they've got a metric ton of positive feedback, but to me the measure of a seller is how they behave when the transaction doesn't go smoothly.

Unrelated note: Do we really need a live action Underdog movie? Just saw the ad.

Hammock related, the following is for [livejournal.com profile] kavieshana, whom I endeavor to make happy in all things:


"Hammock Song" with my unwilling assistant, Duncan Munchkin

~*~

This past weekend was not only Tery's birthday, but our 15-year anniversary. Holy crapamolie. Anyway, to celebrate she wanted Ryan and I to join her at the City Pub (aka Toby Jug) for a trivia tournament. She and I sat at the bar waiting for Ryan to arrive, watching some sort of All American Home Run Derby something-or-other on the telly (I wasn't watching it so much as facing it).

She got up to use the bathroom, leaving me with a pleasant-looking guy at the end of the bar (she makes a point to introduce me to everyone else, so this was a stranger). He started discussing the derby with me, which is I guess my fault for facing the TV and inaccurately portraying myself as someone who cares about baseball. Since I was only smiling and nodding my head politely rather than focusing on his words, I was able to notice his baseball cap, violet with the initials "HP" in unmistakable lightning font. "So, you like Harry Potter?" I asked. Did he ever! He started jabbering excitedly about the new movie and the new book. Despite appearing completely normal and perfectly at home in a bar, he confessed he wore a cape to the movies and re-read all the books each time a new one was released. We were enjoying a very animated, engrossing conversation until Tery returned, unable to believe that I had managed to find a Harry Potter fan in HER bar. I stopped short of discussing my Snarry fixation though, to her relief.

AND we won the trivia tournament! Our team, the Banana Hammocks, ROCKS UR FACE OFF.
grrgoyl: (Buffy Tabula Rasa)
Thanks to all my friends who wished me a happy birthday : )

The day itself wasn't terribly special, particularly since it was one of my "fake days off" after working overnight where every minute is just a struggle to keep my eyes open. However Tery spent it striving to fulfill my one request, a pistachio cake like my mom used to make every year and I haven't had since I moved away from home. She had to recreate it based on the flimsiest of physical descriptions, and with the crushing pressure of not spoiling my happy childhood memory. She didn't do too badly:

Yum!
The unnatural green color is one of my fondest memories


The punchline to this is that while Tery and I were talking to our respective mothers by phone and relating her success, her mother got misty-eyed at the thought of us preserving my family traditions, while my own mother had no memory at all of ever making me pistachio cake. I guess we now know where I get my pathetic memory from.

As for birthday swag, well, not much to list. Tery got me the new Muse (which rocks, btw. There are is a song near the end with a bombastic, Queen-esque, rock opera sound that bring tears to my eyes, some definite anti-Bush leanings, and Supermassive Black Hole and I are engaged to be married). I got South Park Season Nine which I had to buy for myself. Tery gives me shit because I shop for myself a week before my birthday. This is why: because I can't count on, or expect, anyone else but Tery to know what to get me. Then of course there's JeffyJeff's package, which won't arrive until mid September. That's just the way he rolls.

~*~

Another present I got for myself would be the last Harry Potter book. I decided to follow [livejournal.com profile] ms_hecubus's lead and went to Borders hoping to score a free bumper sticker lying around unattended. Instead I almost immediately encountered an employee who asked if I needed help. Rather than wasting time, I asked about the promotion and he offered to reserve a copy for me on the spot. He was accommodating, enthusiastic, and perhaps more than a little gay. He seemed like he would be a really fun coworker and perhaps could have saved me from a life of working jobs requiring minimal human contact. I also know if everyone were half as stoked about customer service as he was, I'd be a damn sight happier as well. When he went to retrieve my sticker (hidden away behind the desk) he asked, "So, where do you stand on the issue?" Unhesitatingly I answered, "I trust Snape!" I heard him murmur approvingly, "I do too."

Snape, Snape, he's our man


Once I was in my car it occurred to me that maybe he agreed with everyone regardless of what they said, but at the time I didn't question him because I simply can't imagine how anyone could NOT trust Snape.

~*~

I'm one step closer to my trip to England. I had also planned on my day off to get my passport renewed (having found it at the bottom of my closet with enormous relief. It had been missing since my car break-in, thus I couldn't be 100% certain that it was lost and not stolen (though obviously only an idiot keeps their passport in their glove compartment). Like I do with most seemingly insurmountable problems, I put it out of my head for a couple of months. Then of course I faced the possibility that it might have been stolen and now had to explain to Uncle Sam that I did nothing about it for a couple of months. That's right, fuck you, Homeland Security! Hence you can imagine my relief when I found it in my closet).

So I had the address of a passport agency that sounded perfect, one-stop shopping for a new photo and application. The problem was it was somewhere on Havana and Colfax, a frightening, busy intersection and, as I discovered, every single shop sign was in Spanish. Rather than try to travel to all four corners surrounded by angry traffic, I hightailed it south back home. However, I know myself very well and that once I got back inside my house I wouldn't want to leave again, and I wanted to get this taken care of. So I phoned Tery for another address (what did we do before cell phones??)

She directed me to a place in an office building very close to our house. I found it with no problem. On entering the office, I was intimidated to be greeted by three security guards as well as a metal detector. Sheesh, did the flight leave from here too? They told me I had to get a new photo, fill out a form and return with a travel itinerary. I said my plans weren't set in stone yet, but they seemed quite insistent that I had to have an itinerary to apply for the passport.

Well, now this is stupid. I'm not about to book a flight and risk not getting a passport in time, but I can't apply for a passport without booking a flight? Only in Bush's America. I decided to apply by mail so I didn't have to face down an unreasonable security guard about this detail.

Then I set out in search of a place to get a photo. The guard had mentioned Walgreen's and some other places that did them, but I heard only Walgreen's. No problem. I could picture a dozen Walgreens in the vicinity, I thought. There was definitely one I knew for certain but it seemed farther away than the ones I was picturing. It turned out none of the places I went where I could clearly picture one actually had one. And why does every single store have a red sign? Rather than just go to the farther one, I obstinately insisted on trying the locations I felt were closer, consequently driving for a half hour in search of a closer one. Pah.

So anyway, I got to one, got my picture taken, and have sent off my application for processing. Since I'm not flying until at least July, I think I have nothing to worry about. Then again, this IS my life we're talking about here. Stay tuned.
grrgoyl: (snarry OTP)
Weekend One P.B. (post break-in), and I'm slowly picking up the pieces. I returned to work at the hospital this weekend with a fair amount of confidence, not because I wasn't nervous (although I do refuse to live in fear), but because Tery feels badly enough about me having to replace my window that she's agreed to let me quit if it happens again. Because I hate to admit it, but now that the novelty has worn off of this job, 75% of my motivation for staying is just to make Tery's life easier. Guilt is a powerful tool, and it works both ways. So now I think of it as being one break-in away from leaving this job. If that isn't seeing the cup as half full, I don't know what is.

My new driver's license has arrived just in time for my trip (and I don't look drugged in this one, thankyou), and I've found a new bag that doesn't begin to approach the coolness of the messenger bag I lost, but it will have to do. Everything's coming together nicely *steepling fingers and tapping them thoughtfully*

~*~

It's December 6th and I'm almost done with my Christmas shopping. This is an unprecedented event in my history of Christmas shopping, and it feels pretty damn good. My older sister seems to have been beset with a terminal case of Johnny Depp lust, and I've obliged her with 3 of his movies off her Amazon wishlist. I know I've said it before, but this year I mean it: If she reciprocates with $13 worth of crap off the streets of Mexico™ again, I WILL cut her off this time.

I say "almost done" because I am still in pursuit of the most elusive, but what will be the best ever, gift for Tery. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you....the iKaraoke. A microphone that plugs into your iPod, transmitting any song to your stereo sans vocals, turning anything into a karaoke number. Think me a wee bit presumptuous, giving the gift of an iPod accessory without actually owning an iPod? Don't. If I don't get one as a gift, I'm buying myself another one. Make no mistake -- one way or the other, I WILL have my iPod wrongs redressed and possess once more that which was taken from me (I've got my eye on this aluminum beauty, in case anyone feels really, really sorry for me. No? I HAVE to find more fabulously wealthy friends, dammit).

But the iKaraoke is proving to be, as I've said, elusive. Amazon has it but mysteriously won't ship it until after Christmas (update: today suddenly it's "unavailable"). Apple.com has a similar delay. BestBuy.com says "Coming soon!" and CircuitCity.com tries to tempt me with crappy old school karaoke machines instead. Phone calls to not one but two Apple stores had similar results. I suppose it's too much to ask a store devoted entirely to Apple products to actually carry, you know, Apple products. Am I the only one who thinks they're really missing the boat on the highest selling volume time of the year? Perhaps they think they're so hot that Christmas or no Christmas won't make a difference in their sales. I wish I could be the one to teach them differently, but Tery simply has to have this.

~*~

I'm so full of the Christmas spirit this year it's almost painful. Last year we were too poor to buy each other gifts, so didn't even bother decorating. Immensely depressing. This year we're making up for it. We're even in a balcony light war with Tracey FCW and I couldn't be more pleased. I even said hi to her the other day in passing, in the interest of forging new neighbor relations (probably to [livejournal.com profile] kavieshana's disappointment, sorry). Active meth users don't bother decorating so elaborately for the holidays, do they? I hope it isn't just a cover.

Conversely, the Alcoholic has new neighbors below her, renters judging from their lack of consideration. They pump up the jams so loudly you can hear them through the closed windows. I'll bet Tracey's screen door hanging wide (albeit quietly) open is looking pret-ty good to her right about now. Karma certainly can be an evil bitch, my friends.

~*~

Lastly, after [livejournal.com profile] ms_hecubus' hair-tearing announcement that the Harry Potter DVDs might be re-released with new extras, I Googled "Harry Potter commentary" immediately to see for myself. One of the results didn't promise to answer my questions, but I clicked nevertheless, on a commentary on the Harry Potter mania. It turned out to be an open letter from one of these God freaks denouncing Harry Potter and all the Evil JK Rowling has wrought on the World with her bastard Creation. I'm sure these things are a dime a dozen on the internet, but I've never bothered to read one.

And I regret starting with this One. The Author rants and raves about how the Lord wants Him to spread this Message and how it behooves each one of Us to help Him do so. As far as I can tell, the Message is simply, "Harry Potter is Bad." He doesn't produce one Shred of Evidence to support His rant, not a single quote or example, and in fact left me highly Doubtful that He'd even read the Books at all. He had the nerve to say something to the effect of, "If the Columbine High School killers grew up without Harry Potter, how much worse will the Future be with children that have been Raised on it?" And to compare the supposed literacy benefit to Children reading Hustler magazine. "All sins are Equal in the Eyes of God, so I don't think this is too much of an Exaggeration" he writes. This is perhaps a fair statement to make about the Harry Potter stories that I read, but 10-year-olds? Sir, get a grip.

To this I have the same four words I've always had: Lord. Of. The. Rings. An entire generation grew up reading those books and it didn't bring about the birth of the Antichrist. I also refuse to be told what I can and can't read by someone who uses such random and nonsensical Capitalization in their own writing (demonstrated in the above paragraph. Hella distracting and obnoxious). As for Harry Potter fans' serial killer potential, frankly I worry more about children raised by religious fanatics who don't feel the need to provide valid, logical reasons to hate and fear things indiscriminately.
grrgoyl: (imaginary snarry)
I haven't written much lately, and that's because nothing much has been happening. As talented as I am, even I can't make something out of nothing. There are some burning thoughts I need to get rid of though (have I crossed too far over the line into fangirl insanity if I confess I think of my journal as a Pensieve? Yeah, I was afraid of that. Try not to judge me).

First off, New! Quickie movie reviews! Because I didn't care enough about these movies to devise a particularly in-depth analysis.

The Ring Two Try and try as I might, I couldn't find a single positive thing said about this movie anywhere. So perhaps just because I'm bloody-minded, I have to say it wasn't all THAT bad. Yes, they did recycle a lot of the same scares from the first one. Yes, I found it remarkably fortuitous that Rachel could not only sneak onto an ambulance completely unnoticed to take a peek at the first victim, but also end up face to face with the victim's girlfriend at the police station purely coincidentally after being told she couldn't see her, again completely unnoticed despite being mere feet from the front desk. Or for that matter that the agent selling the Morgan place has no problem with Rachel going into the basement and taking whatever personal effects she wants. But I was willing to overlook all of this because this movie gave the creepy son, Aidan, an ample showcase of his apparently one acting ability, staring unblinkingly -- at the ceiling, at the floor, at the TV, at the window, at Rachel, it doesn't matter. I just can't get enough. I was confused by one thing though -- ::cut in case anyone else might someday want to see the movie:: ) In short, not the best sequel ever made, but not the worst either, not by a long shot. 2.5 out of 5

Wedding Crashers This came highly recommended by most of Tery's coworkers, who I can only assume are too easily amused. Not to say it wasn't funny, but it used the same tired old cliche of the sweet, funny, sexy girl engaged to an insensitive, overbearing ass who plainly doesn't deserve her. This idea has already been played out in The Wedding Singer, The Office TV series and Saw (though admittedly you REALLY have to look hard to read this subtext in that last). Why oh why do women end up with such unsuitable fiancees? Although as long as we're on the subject of unsuitable partners, Rachel McAdams (Claire) appears to be playing late teens/early 20's (in reality she's 29) to Owen Wilson, who looks like he's in his late 30's (in reality he's 37...which I guess is late 30's). This is slightly distasteful in a cradle-robbing way (though the irony isn't lost on me that I have no problem imagining a 17+ year old Harry hooking up with a 35-40 year old Snape. It's different with guys. They don't care about stuff like that, as long as they're getting some. Or so I imagine). This movie easily falls into a specific category that includes Dodgeball, Anchorman and The 40-Year-Old Virgin; namely, movies I laughed at a lot but strangely feel no need to ever watch again. Eh. 2 out of 5. And can anyone explain to me why Owen's much cuter brother Luke doesn't get more work? Maybe he's just more selective with his scripts. Pity.

Speaking of Snarry (because I always am, even when it seems like I'm not), I found a story I loved so much I read it three times in two days: The Dreaming Spires. Snape, for reasons I won't give away here, is living like a Muggle with no memory of his life at Hogwart's (and also believing he's straight). Harry appears and Severus realizes what I've known for most of my adult life: that in the Game of Attraction, body parts aren't nearly as important as the person they are attached to. Just lovely. I wonder if my feelings when finding a gem like this are similar to what's going through Tery's head when she starts whooping and hollering for Kentucky (the team, not the state) in the living room?

Tery even penned a little ditty in tribute to my Snarry obsession, sung to the tune of "Flagpole Sitta" by Harvey Danger: "Imaginary Snarry sex and everybody's coming to get me//and if you're bored then you're boring" That's it really. It doesn't make much sense, but we were both so tickled with how the first line rhymed and fit the beats so nicely.

Finally, for those who can't understand my obsessive need to own DVDs with the maximum number of extra features, I give you one small reason from GoF:

Ten points from Hufflepuff!

This is a clip from a fairly lengthy deleted Snape scene. Here we see Snape breaking up romantic teenagers on the night of the Yule Ball, because we all know that teen sex is only the first step of a long downward spiral into sin. Go Snape Go! He's so spry and aggressive. Of course it pisses me off that this got cut. No, it's not terribly important to the rest of the movie, but the man has so little to do as it is. Leave his damn scenes alone. How long until Order of the Phoenix? *sigh*
grrgoyl: (pangea_tongue's Monarch)
At last, it is mine. You know what I'm talking about.

A couple of days ago Tery, no doubt trying to be helpful, mentioned a promo at Best Buy: the new Harry Potter for $13.99 and a free lithograph with purchase. Sounded pretty sweet so I waited until yesterday to investigate at the website, but not a mention of it anywhere, which I thought odd. I called her to ask for more clues. "Maybe it was Circuit City," she said carelessly, completely oblivious to the importance of the issue. I surfed on over to CC's website but there was nothing there either (though both sites were shamelessly using images from the film to sell $300 plasma TVs, just to tease me). "I don't know, maybe it's a secret sale," she offered. I said, "I would think the point of the promo would be to motivate shoppers to buy the DVD from them. It would sort of defeat the purpose if no one knew about it." Realizing she was hopelessly outmaneuvered, her only response was, "I've got to get back to work now." That's it. Run and hide when faced with flawless logic. (Boring conclusion: I did eventually find the promo on page 19 of CC's online weekly specials flyer (pretty damn close to secret) except it was for the plain old, no-frills widescreen version, not the super sexy, super extras-packed deluxe version. People should know me well enough by now to deduce what my preference is).

I went to bed at 9:30, exhausted after a particularly grueling day at Sears, plus I reasoned that the sooner I went to sleep, the sooner it would be today. This however backfired on me when I awoke at 12:20 a.m. out of a dead sleep with butterflies in my stomach. I tried to go back to sleep, only to wake again at 12:40 with the same problem. I was, like the kid on the Disneyworld commercial, too excited to sleep. I lay there staring at the ceiling, imagining gleaming towering displays of Harry Potter DVDs, barely touched by human hands, just sitting there waiting for me. Damnit. I asked myself what I had to lose other than a little gasoline. At that time of the morning I could be there and back in 15 minutes and no one would even know. I figured if the DVDs weren't on the salesfloor yet I could just buy cat litter instead. We always need cat litter, and it's not at all unusual to buy it at 1 a.m. Right? After several more abortive attempts to resume unconsciousness, I gave in.

I went out to the living room and to my surprise Tery was still up. I told her where I was going. She sighed, not remotely surprised, and told me to be careful. Okay....?

I'm sure there's some snickering going on at the lengths my obsessions drive me to, but it's no easy thing to stroll into Walmart at that hour and affect any degree of nonchalance, just as if I HADN'T gotten up in the middle of the night for one purpose and one purpose only. To walk by the display of new releases and try to pull off a "Oh hey....the new Harry Potter. I had no idea it was out already. Well, as long as I'm here, I might as well pick up a copy...", then pretend to browse in the Men's Department while surreptitiously reading the back of the case to make sure it's the right edition. It only took me a few minutes to admit to myself that I didn't much care if I was fooling the other 5 people in the store (and that the other 5 people probably didn't much care themselves what I was up to) and went to check out. If the girl at the register thought me strange, she gave no sign (although she was clearly none too pleased about working the third shift and had her own problems).

I got home and walked in the front door with the DVD clutched possessively under one arm. Tery was in the kitchen and, seeing no shopping bag, asked gleefully, "Nothing?" Oh, she would like that, wouldn't she? Thanks for the support. As I drooled a little over the pictures on the cover and debated whether or not I wanted to sleep with it, she said, "If you were a NORMAL person you'd be getting out of a bar at this hour and THEN go shopping." It's really quite remarkable that we have anything to talk about at all together. Fortunately for me March Madness is starting so I will be a brackets widow, while Tery will be a Harry Potter widow (well actually, not much is changing from her perspective there). So it all works out okay in the end.

3 guesses what I'M doing tonight?

P.S.: I'd also personally like to thank Warner Bros. for not using a single exclamation point in the DVD plot synopsis. If there's anything I hate, it's DVD makers who pepper the summary with tons of exclamation points to try to drum up artificial excitement in their product.
grrgoyl: (hustle)
This is my new little friend, Skeeter.

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I won Skeeter during the Yankee Swap (or White Elephant) at Breckenridge. Actually Tabby unwrapped him, but I cleverly figured out a way around my intense hatred of the Yankee Swap process: If you just take something from someone else, you know what you are getting and can avoid having everyone's eyes on you as you unwrap something you don't like and have to feign excitement over (I get quite enough of that with my regular Christmas gifts, thanks). In this case it all worked out for the best because the next gift she picked was some sort of liquor, so it was a win-win situation.

I didn't post a pic earlier because tragically on packing day I dropped him and broke off his head and caused fairly severe lacerations to his front legs. I was too devastated to deal with it before, but last night I went to work with the super glue. You can still see the scars, and he has a reverse tracheostomy on the back of his neck, but still. He is adorable, no?

Tery is gone on a 3-day business trip to L.A., so to keep the bird entertained I turned to the XM radio channels included on my satellite TV service. I stumbled upon a station that I'm hooked on now, a 90's and contemporary alternatives channel that plays awesome song after awesome song...a lot of older stuff I forgot I loved so much, and a lot of new stuff I didn't realize I loved yet. U2, Bush, Garbage, The Strokes, The White Stripes, The Decemberists, Our Lady Peace, The Dandy Warhols, Stabbing Westward, Smashing Pumpkins, some Franz Ferdinand, Killers, Depeche Mode, even NIN and The Cure. The name of this incredible channel? Ethel. I guess "Irma" and "Gertrude" were taken? Weird. I'm working upstairs on the computer with the TV remote next to me so I can see who sings this amazing new song I've never heard before, but being an old lady I have to put on my glasses to read the tiny type on the screen so I can download all the hottest hits. (Guess I could just go to XM's website.) Not sure how the bird feels about it, but she's happy any time I'm singing and dancing, and there's a hell of a lot of that going on with this music playing.

But please don't tell DirecTV I love it so much. I similarly went apeshit over their college indie rock channel and a week later it was available through special subscription only. Fuckers.

One new discovery I've made that I'm thrilled with is the band Muse. I could have sworn I had someone on my f-list who occasionally has Muse listed under their Current Music (remember now...my clever and hip Roxie girl. SUCH good taste in music, baby). LOVE. THEM. The lead singer sounds like the love child of Jeff Buckley and Thom Yorke of Radiohead. Their melodies alternate between hauntingly ethereal and sublime to heartbreakingly dark and seductive to angsty, angry and fucking rocking my ass off. I haven't raped and pillaged the music industry by downloading so extensively off Limewire since I found Kill Hannah. I swear I love every song I download more than the last. Check them out. The song that got me started is "Our Time is Running Out." Masterful.

Finally, last night I was watching Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (trying to forget how long I still have to wait before Goblet of Fire comes out) and something struck me that I keep thinking about. After reading Half-Blood Prince and some theories online, I became unshakeably convinced that Snape is still good and only killed Dumbledore because DD asked him to. This may seem like a no-brainer to some, but I discussed it at work with a girl who believes everything is exactly how J.K. made it appear to be. I remember feeling a tiny bit contemptuous that she would take something at face value so readily and refuse to be willing to read any more into it. But whatever.

Anyway, in CoS Fawkes flies in to assist Harry in the Chamber, and later Dumbledore says that Harry must have demonstrated great loyalty to him for Fawkes to do that. This stuck with me for some reason, and now I think it would be really cool if in the next book Fawkes appears to help Snape (perhaps even defend him against Harry) because of his loyalty to DD. I am so in love with this idea that I think I will be terribly disappointed if J.K. DOESN'T use it. Again, I don't hang out on chat boards or read any official sites in the fandom, so if this is old hat to anyone, forgive me.

Edit: What are the odds? I just finished a Snarry that uses this very idea. I'm so damn sheltered.

Think I'm done pointlessly rambling for now.
grrgoyl: (MST)
First off, I'd like to thank all of you who took the time to participate in my poll (especially to [livejournal.com profile] aeryn42 and [livejournal.com profile] citizenjess who had the cojones to pick #3). It more or less confirmed my own feelings on the subject. And that's all I'm going to say about it.

Secondly, I at last have finished Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Yes, I'm a slower reader than I used to be, but I defy anyone to do it faster while working 2 jobs and getting the book a week later than everyone else. Pfffffft.

::cut for spoilers, even though I'm probably the last person to finish reading it:: )


No, you know what? Don't bother clicking because what I have to say doesn't really include any spoilers. I did that to make a point. My point being that, whereas all of my friends who had something to say about the book were considerate enough to cut, there are people out there with very big mouths who couldn't wait to get any attention they could, even negative, by blabbing spoilers. I'm hardly a rabid fan but it still would have been nice to have some kind of surprise waiting at the end of the book. I don't hang out in any HP communities, but was instead spoiled by a self-satisfied, insensitive jackass who is forever dead to me for using a spoily icon while commenting in the journal of a friend who I don't hold responsible in the slightest, except for maybe having a poor choice in other friends (especially considering how much she dislikes meanness in people). And their elitist, I'm-sick-of-everyone-wanting-to-friend-me-so-make-sure-you-fit-my-stringent-guidelines friends-only banner doesn't do much to endear me to them either. (Warning: Don't click to their journal if you still haven't read Book Six, as they are just that big of an asshat that it is in fact their default icon). Tell me this isn't the very definition of assholery: Going to the trouble of creating an icon with the spoiler in huge neon flashing block letters that can't be missed, clearly designed specifically to piss people off, then acting defensive, surprised and put-upon when people get pissed off.

Am I overreacting? I don't think so. See previous posts for my vitriolic hatred of people who spoil.

So anyway, Book Six. My enjoyment of it was hindered not only by starting out with knowledge of the spoiler, but by my abysmally inadequate memory. I don't know what's happening to me. In my youth when I could voraciously devour books by the shelf-full I had an almost photographic memory. By the end of Chapter One of the HBP, I found myself wishing the books came with Buffy-like recaps, "Previously, on Harry Potter..." Who are these people again? Snape was the only one I remembered clearly. Draco too, but what was his relationship to these women? So it went through the book. The only characters I could recall easily were the ones that appeared in the films. I forgot what "D.A." stood for, it was driving me crazy trying to remember if Parvati Patil was a girl or a boy, and don't even get me started on why Percy Weasley was so scorned these days. I remembered Sirius dying though none of the specifics on how, Harry and Dumbledore remained the only two who knew the "complete prophecy," including me, the reader, and wasn't Tonks a cat at one point? What the hell does "squib" mean again? My memory is even bad enough that I had trouble remembering from one chapter to the next what I had just read. Early senility? One might wonder why I even bother reading the books. Argh.

A friend at work (who does still voraciously devour books) thought maybe I should have reviewed at least the last chapter of Book Five, and at this point I think she was right. With a twinkle in her eye she warned me that there were references all the way back to Book Two in HBP. Do they put out Cliffs notes for Harry Potter?

So this is why I need not bother cutting for spoilers. I have no grand sweeping essay on how the events of this book fit in with my long-standing theory on so-and-so, because I have no ability to look back on the entire storyline of all 6 books. I admire people who can, I really do. Good for you that you can point to Book Three, page 156 and say, "Ah-HA! I KNEW it!" Or people who can refer to some obscure name that was mentioned once back in Book Four and speculate as to their role in light of these new developments. Me, I'm resigned to agreeing with whoever poses the most convincing argument about...whatever. Like this person here: found in [livejournal.com profile] ms_hecubus's journal. Which I don't mind telling you I find more than a little irritating, as someone who graduated with a B.A. in English who could previously churn out a respectable paper on just about anything that was asked of me.

::Okay, just some wee tiny spoilers:: )

Finally, just like another friend, it was impossible to read this book without imagining how it will be brought to the silver screen. Of course by the time they get to this one, the actors will be well into their 20's, however, I agree with my work friend that I'd rather see the 20-somethings trying to pull off 16 than a complete change of cast. I also wondered if Daniel Radcliffe, Alan Rickman, et.al. read the books with at least part of an eye towards what will be expected of them in future scripts. That has to be a surreal experience.
grrgoyl: (frank)
I finally got paid today and took my replenished bank balance to my local grocery store immediately, where there were about 20 copies of HBP to choose from. It was all I could do not to hold my pretty aloft right in the store and cackle, "MUWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!" Whereas I'm sure camping out all night to buy a book can be a fun and exciting adventure, it was just as satisfying for me to not have to wait in a huge line and battle throngs of other fans stampeding towards the shelves. This scenario would probably end badly anyway as I am not of the attitude that little kids should be deferred to, and I just might trample one or two in my selfish haste. My little sister is even smarter -- she's one book behind the rest of the world, so she can leisurely wait for paperback, or bargain bins. There's definitely something to be said for keeping very busy with real life. I am still that busy, but come Sunday afternoon, I'm locking myself in the bedroom for the better part of the day. Although I do want to make the pleasure last, so I doubt I'll be in a hurry to finish it all in one sitting.

In a story that couldn't possibly be more unrelated, I have been amusing myself during the day watching a mini-drama unfold on the bathroom floor. You see, it is hot here (I know, it's hot everywhere. Hear me out). Damn hot, and being in a top-floor condo doesn't help matters one bit. I can only bear to work at the computer (in the loft of the top-floor condo) all day with the aid of a desk fan blowing directly in my face, a swamp cooler pressed against my legs, a frozen wet towel wrapped around my neck, and a spritzer bottle used to liberally soak my face, hair and feet throughout the day. Sure, we have AC, if you count the tiny wall unit downstairs that is only truly effective if you stand directly in front of it. So it isn't unusual to notice the critters sprawled in varying positions of heat exhaustion in the tiled rooms of the house, namely the kitchen and bathroom, where there is some illusion of being cooler. It is QUITE unusual, however, to see them all in the same room, like I did yesterday. Fortunately, I have photographic documentation of this rare event:

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"Denial"

This is titled "Denial" because Polo (upper left) sleeps in here, on that exact spot, every day. The other animals do not. Note the look of indignation on her face. Note also that GiddyGiddy (lower right) is the only one who truly doesn't give a shit and looks the least like he's squaring off in a showdown.

::watch the drama unfold!:: )

In vaguely related news, we finally have a new cage for Pepita. A client that owns macaws (which are three times Pepita's size) donated an old cage to make room for a bigger one. Tery got to take it home, quite a coup when you realize this cage is easily worth about $1000. It is nice-looking, but big. We had to drastically rearrange our living room furniture to make room. Here's an idea of how big:

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Keep in mind please that Pepita herself is about 6 inches tall. She hasn't got inside it yet. I don't think she's aware that the transition is inevitable, because this thing is so heavy that if we move, it will be included with the purchase of the unit. Of course, if she doesn't use it we could always turn it into a spare closet.

Edit Pt II: Oh yeah! I almost forgot. I had the best dream last night about meeting Ewan McGregor. I shyly approached him with something to autograph. As he signed it, he leaned over and breathed my name into my ear seductively. This naturally affected me, but not as much as the fact that I hadn't told it to him, which meant that he already knew it somehow. *sigh* Then I had to wake up to the sun pounding on my face in a puddle of moisture (sweat! It was sweat!)

Back to sweating my ass off work for me.
grrgoyl: (satan)
I am very poor this week, thanks to my damn house payment. So poor, in fact, that I have to resort to toasting bread heel slices for a sandwich in an attempt to trick myself into believing they aren't stale. Clearly some other life essentials have to take the back burner for an indefinite amount of time, and what I am talking about is the HBP (if you have no idea what that stands for, then you are exempt from this warning).

If anyone on my friends list feels the need to write about so much as an uncle named Harry, put it behind a damn cut. I mean it. I HATE spoilers and I hate those that spoil. I'll unfriend you so fast...I think you get the picture.

Edit: The same is true of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I have high hopes indeed for this movie, and I want to know NOTHING going into it. Which I will do in a few weeks.

Speaking of Harry Potter, since no one else has commented on this: Not surprisingly, the new pope wasted no time getting his little papal panties in a twist over the way Sorcery "erodes the soul of Christianity," yadda yadda yadda. It IS surprising that he believes any of Harry's millions of fans give one tiny rat's ass what he thinks. (Hey! "rat's ass"/ "Ratzinger"...that was purely unintentional) Lighten up, Ratzi. A.) Last I checked, Sorcery doesn't actually exist, and even if it did, I'm sure the right wing conservatives would legislate it into a stranglehold anyway ("No special rights for sorcerers!") B.) Aren't we forgetting generations of good, law-abiding folks that grew up on Lord of the Rings? Those books didn't bring about the downfall of civilization, and I seriously doubt Harry will either. C.) Shouldn't we just be happy that kids are excited about reading again instead of rotting their brains with "Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas"?

That's enough religious hostility for one night. Peace out.
grrgoyl: (cleese)
I finally got to see Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. My date for seeing this was very carefully selected. I wanted to avoid the mad throngs of opening weekend, but didn't want to be the last person in America to see it either, in case I ran into more jackasses like the script-reciting morons from Van Helsing. For once I really couldn't complain about my fellow audience, apart from some fidgetiness that is to be totally expected from such a young group at a 2-hour, 20-minute movie.

::spoilers de Senor Potter:: )

All in all I think this was far superior to the first two, and the first I would consider buying. It still dragged in spots but I give it a 4/5.

-=Lainey=-

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