bought a new car, Mazda3, graphite
bought rose-gold swirly earrings - according to the post office they were processed in Las Vegas post office on Thursday
got a massage - made some phone calls and found my favorite massage person at a little shop in West Little Rock - 1 hour of glorious relaxation followed by a quiet evening on the couch with kitties
saw a really excellent documentary (Warrior Champions) with pearlbeachlady as part of a fundraiser for the Clinton School of Public Service - won two tickets from the Little Rock Film Festival
finished a major goal of my current workload (chapter 3 is out for agency technical review), and have a half-strategy for the seemingly insurmountable pile of work still on the desk
at the point in the semester when I am tired of going to class, even though the subject matter is my favorite (macro!)
filling my new U-Verse dvr with movies on the Sundance channel
reading Stroke of Insight and (pardon the pun) gaining some amazing insight into the way the left and right brains work
emailed two people, regarding becoming a volunteer for the screening committee for the documentary film festival - something I've wanted to do for years - got a response from one of the two, saying my message would be forwarded to the festival and film programming director
starting to think about making a trip to DC next year to visit MOLLY!!! - and will be timing it to match the Lilith Fair concert date, yet to be announced
looking forward to knit nite - even if I'll be grading quizzes
Arresting Ana - pro anorexia websites are targeted in France (good)
More than Skin Deep - really good information about skin cancer (melanoma) but crappy production
The Way We Get By - group of people who send off and greet every flight of troops arriving/leaving for the Middle East through the Bangor Maine airport (excellent)
Stage IV - woman had breast cancer which spread to her bones and liver and lungs (walked out - hated the woman)
The Edge of Things - woman had a big ol' brain tumor on her right frontal lobe, and has Traumatic Brain Injury, she lives in a brain injury rehab place where she writes poetry (mediocre - should have been a 20 minute film rather than 80 minute film)
The Pit - a look at the coffee options traders at the New York Board of Trade (excellent)
Broadcast Blues - the news lies, the Supreme Court says that's ok, and the FCC doesn't listen (good)
Claiming the Title - the US Olympic Committee sued to stop the 1982 Gay Olympics and the Supreme Court agreed (good)
Fish Out of Water - explores the 7 passages of scripture that are used to condemn homosexuality (excellent)
Standard Deviation - a family's story of a brilliant son/brother's slide from experimental physics to eco-terrorism (good)
70x7 The Forgiveness Equation - two familes with two stories of murder, loss, and forgiveness (excellent)
You Don't Know Jack - biographical documentary of hollywood actor Jack Soo; who I know from the show Barney Miller (good)
Agent Orange - the current effects of the use of Agent Orange during the Vietnam War (hard-to-watch emotional but good)
Finding Face - woman had acid thrown on her by an Cambodian official's wife with no charges or investigation (hard-to-watch emotional but good)
Home Grown - family produces food and power at their little house in the middle of Los Angeles (good)
Striking Metal / Tira Bakal - family in Philippines recreates the crucifixion day every year on Good Friday, and one year someone volunteers to have his hands nailed to the cross (interesting)
And What Remains - father and son travel to a small town in Kansas and visit a grave (pretty terrible)
When I'm Not Alone - female raised as male for 28 years, severely abused by family, lives his own life in a supportive environment (good)
First and Loveliss - Lloyd and Jackie are friends; he's an extravagant southern male who has traveled and collected stuff; they do puzzles (excellent)
Out There - gay couple in North Little Rock talk to the camera (pretty terrible)
No Sana Hoy - girl talks to her dementia-addled grandmother about her home, possibly Havana (just god awful, but I don't think we got to see the whole film - instead maybe 10 minutes?)
Miya of Quiet Strength - woman survives 1991 University of Iowa shootings, survives her wheelchair going crazed and throwing her onto subway lines, to get inflammatory breast cancer (good)
Looking for Roots - following the Jewish tradition of remembering, film maker allows grandfather to tell Auschwitz story, and family travels to Romanian home for the first time since WWII (good)
Who is Bozo Texino? - study of the signatures/tags of hobos and some railroad workers on train cars (bad camera work - not enjoyable)
Seven Signs - film maker interviews people across different places in "the south" (half excellent - half crap; thought about buying the dvd)
The Narcotic Farm - federal prison in Lexington Kentucky for drug addicts in the 50's and 60's conducted world-wide groundbreaking research at addiction research center (excellent - want everyone to see this one)
Charlie Bartlett - although there is much John Hughes-like formulative plot (which carries no big surprises), there are a few things that are enchanting in this rich-kid-goes-to-public-school-and-
Rear Window - I was inspired by the recent AFI special of the top 10 movies in 10 genres. I realized that I've never seen an Alfred Hitchcock movie. I saw this in the movie guide one day and decided to set the dvr. It's also the first movie I've watched with Grace Kelly. It was hard to watch while ironing clothes (too much that must be seen and not heard).
Hairworld: The Pursuit of Excellence - This quirky documentary from PBS provides an inside look at the "Hair Olympics," an intense competition pitting hundreds of hairstylists from more than 40 countries against one another in a string of timed tests to determine styling skill. Following Team U.S.A., filmmaker Mark Lewis explores all the highlights and bad hair days as the trainers, competitors and models prep rigorously for the 31st International HairWorld Championships in Moscow.
Thinking XXX - Adult film stars discuss their careers and celebrity in this behind-the-scenes look at the making of photographer Timothy Greenfield-Sanders's book XXX. Along with footage of Greenfield-Sanders as he shoots the portraits for his revealing tome, the film also captures candid conversations about the industry with authors, artists and cultural experts.
Sound and Fury - examining the political and emotional turmoil that erupts between brothers over the cochlear implant that might allow their deaf children to hear. The ways in which a so-called miracle cure can divide as well as heal families and communities is the focus of Sound and Fury, which received an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary Feature
Small Town Gay Bar - homophobia is alive and well -- especially in the small towns of the Deep South. Focusing on the day-to-day struggles of two Mississippi gay bars and the grateful patrons who often travel hundreds of miles to find them, filmmaker Malcolm Ingram reveals a surprisingly close community that treats its residents like family members.
Trembling before G-d - homosexuality and religion -- are thrust together in this revealing documentary. Gay and lesbian Jews who have been cast off by their families and by religious figures are interviewed in major metropolitan areas across the globe. Even in societies where homosexuality is gaining acceptance, many of those interviewed still struggle with balancing an intolerant faith with their sexual orientation.
Desk Set - The mysterious man hanging about at the research department of a big TV network proves to be engineer Richard Sumner, who's been ordered to keep his real purpose secret: computerizing the office. Department head Bunny Watson, who knows everything, needs no computer to unmask Richard. The resulting battle of wits and witty dialogue pits Bunny's fear of losing her job against her dawning attraction to Richard. <I LOVE KATHARINE HEPBURN.>
Serendipity - romantic comedy with John Cusack and Kate Beckensale that I can watch over and over
Miracle on 34th Street - It was Thanksgiving Day, so of course I had to watch. And it was my favorite version: 1947 black/white.
Nose, Iranian Style - Documentary filmmaker Mehrdad Oskouei considers the epidemic of nose jobs in contemporary Iran, the world leader in rhinoplasty with an estimated 60,000 to 70,000 operations each year. In a country that discourages personal expression and disdains Western culture, young Iranians eagerly change their noses to model images in European and American fashion magazines.
A Family Undertaking - Before the Civil War, preparing the dead for burial and funeral rites generally fell to friends and family members of the deceased. The 20th century saw the rise of the professional undertaker, a trend that changed American attitudes toward death and distanced grievers from their loved ones. This eye-opening film uncovers a growing movement advocating a return to a more traditional, personal approach to honoring the dead.
Saving Grace - A wealthy widow discovers that she is not wealthy at all: in fact she is more than 300,000 British pounds in debt, thanks to her late husband's failed business ventures. To get her out of debt, her handyman comes up with a plan to grow a certain cash crop in her greenhouse.
Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill - A homeless musician finds meaning to his life when he starts a friendship with dozens of parrots
The Dark Side of Po&n: Po&n Shutdown - industry came to a virtual standstill after it was revealed that popular performer Darren James became infected with HIV
Keep Not Silent - three Israeli women’s courageous fight for self-realization, honesty and acceptance. All are pious members of Jerusalem’s Orthodox community. And all three are lesbians. While mindful of holy strictures forbidding homosexuality, each manifests her sexuality differently.
The Bridge - Golden Gate Bridge, the most popular suicide destination in the world, and those drawn by its call. Steel and his crew filmed the bridge during daylight hours from two separate locations for all of 2004, recording most of the two dozen deaths in that year (and preventing several others). They also taped interviews with friends, families and witnesses, who recount in sorrowful detail stories of struggles with depression, substance abuse and mental illness.
The Eyes of Tammy Faye - a documentary look, mostly through the eyes of Tammy Faye Bakker Messner
Josh Caldwell rode a Segway from Seattle to Boston, while his buddy Hunter Weeks directed a film they both shot about the experience and about the moments leading up to this crazy twist on the American road trip. Funding runs out when they get to Ohio, but the group trades in their retirement accounts to finish the trip.
documentary last night: Dr. Bronner's Magic Soapbox
In 1947, after escaping from a mental institution, he invented the formula for “Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap,” a peppermint-infused, all-natural, multi-purpose liquid that can be found today in every American health food store. On each bottle of his soap, he printed an ever-evolving set of teachings he called “The Moral ABC,” designed, in his words, “TO UNITE ALL MANKIND FREE!”
I've just finished a weekend of movies through the Little Rock Film Festival. The absolutely outstanding ShowBusiness was the standout film for me. I could watch it again right now, and will completely praise it to anyone who gets near me. Other highlight of the weekend was a sneak preview of Knocked Up. After the first 15 minutes, the movie was good. Some of the funniest moments weren't in the trailers, which is always a good sign. Maybe the film won't get lost in all the other summer super-movies.
I'm really loving the digital cable with DVR and On Demand. I've got a third of my hard drive full, and I'm watching more movies than I've ever watched in my life. This week I watched An Affair to Remember, half of Girl Interrupted with bonus notes below the letterbox, and Under the Tuscan Sun. Of course there were also season finales to watch: Grey's, ANTM, CSI, House, and the big three episode of Idol.
My little garden is happily growing. I've got lavender, parsley, catnip, basil, lettuce, squash, and a watermelon plant. I've already used the parsley and basil in a recipe. Henry has attempted to completely squash the catnip several times.
The yard looks good right now. It's super-green, and only has a couple of shrinking bald spots from last year's damage. I've kept the weeds out of the beautyberry bed in the back, but I think it gave me poison ivy. Hopefully my arm will stop itching in very soon.
I made my first loaf of gluten-free bread (the famous $260 loaf of bread), but it didn't rise properly. It was tough to get (and keep) the liquid at a high enough temperature for the yeast. I think the next time I try to make a loaf, I'll do the yeast mixture first instead of having the yeast in the flour mix. Maybe I can get the yeast to do its thing and then sustain the rise as I add ingredients.
Greek Food Fest was delicious. I had a pork kabob for lunch and bought an extra for supper between films. I also had to have the baklava, gluten be damned. Next weekend is Riverfest, and Pat Benetar sings on Friday night. I'm just not sure if I want to go. W will probably go dance, and S heads to her dad's house for the holiday. I just don't do big crowds alone.
20 bucks for entry to all films!
I've already figured out my tentative schedule. I've only got three scheduling upsets (films I want to see, but due to scheudling, wont). One will be in theaters in two weeks. One will most likely be shown at the documentary festival in October. The third I'll probably have to wait a year until it's released on dvd.
Watched a handful of films at the AFI Film Festival.
The best of what I saw: Clear Cut Simple (student short film), The Go-Getter, King of Kong (my favorite - by far - documentary), Knocking, Who Loves the Sun (with the grown-up-little-boy-from-Witness) and Marrying God.
Drove from Dallas to Newport to Jonesboro for visitation and funeral.
Back to Newport for the best Mexican food.
Back to my house for sleep and kitten scritching.
Upgrade to digital cable
Watch Decalouge disc 1
My first LP was The Gambler. My first concert was Kenny Rogers with special guest Dottie West.
I've seen Six Pack (with Anthony Michael Hall) multiple times.
They're showing concert footage:
Ruby Don't Take Your Love to Town
Don't Fall in Love with a Dreamer (w/ Kim Carnes)
She Believes in Me
Blue Skies with Willie Nelson
I Can't Unlove You (one of those new ones - bah)
Buy Me a Rose (one of those new ones - bah)
Coward of the County
We've Got Tonight (with Sheena Easton)
The Last 10 Years (one of those new ones - bah)
Through the Years
Islands in the Stream