Say what you will about him, but Kanye put out a pretty amazing album.
Nathan Bulmer is kind of my favorite right now.
Duran Duran - Come Undone
This song was playing in the grocery store yesterday and has been stuck in my head ever since. It even made it into my dream last night, wherein I was poorly singing it to Chelsea while she rolled her eyes at me. At least, I’m pretty sure it was in my dream because that is pretty close to something that would actually happen.
Ok, listen: I know I have this weird “bitter about the world and all the stupid stuff and dumb ol’ dummies make me mad” persona going on, but here’s the thing — I actually really like some stupid stuff, too. And not in an ironic, “oh let’s watch Honey Boo Boo and laugh at their redneckery and feel better about ourselves” kind of way. (In all honesty, that show, Jersey Shore and the like make me genuinely uncomfortable, and I won’t watch them because I prefer not to be sad about someone else’s life, and I have better things to do with my time. Anyway…)
This weekend, instead of going out and raging like the 22-year old I’m not, the missus and I decided to stay in and watch a movie “On Demand.” After the travesty that was “Snow White and the Huntsmen” (seriously, if you want to waste money on something painful, just give me $5 and I will punch you in the junk a few times.) we decided on some lighter fare, and the previews for “Katy Perry: The Movie - Part of Me" looked like just the sort of brainless fodder we needed for a Saturday night. It would be worth a chuckle or two, and the type of thing that could be taken at face value without judgement or expectation of it being anything more than a silly peek into the world of a silly pop princess.
I guess not having any expectations allowed me to see the film as something a little more interesting, and I actually enjoyed it. I could have done with less songs and concert footage, but overall, the production value was nothing short of amazing, and it did a fantastic job of creating some intimate moments usually reserved for a more poignant documentary.
There was a moment toward the end of the film that captured Perry in an extremely vulnerable and desperate place, and you could almost see her heart break. But instead of letting it get to her, she wiped away her tears and slapped a smile on her face and arose from the depths of the stage, her star mint candy bosom gadgets twirling and her glittery microphone shimmering — just another day at the office.
It wasn’t what I’d call “inspirational” by any means, but the overall view of Perry’s rise to fame and her struggle along the way was a captivating thing, and the film certainly did a nice job of showing the kind of hustle one needs in order to make it in any industry. If anything, I took away a new respect for Katy and her ilk, but I also realized I could incorporate some of her drive into my own life. And of course, remembering that no matter what kind of day you’re having, sometimes you have to just hold up that shimmering microphone that brought you to the stage, slap on a smile, and let your hypnotic candy boobs lead the way.
Not because I want to be the next great American novelist or anything, but in my downtime, I’ve had a chance to read a lot more. Reading, as it tends to do, inspires me to write more, and I want to work that muscle as much as possible. NaNoWriMo is one of the best exercise programs for writers that I can think of. For someone who has been out of school as long as I have been, it helps to have some sort of program to keep me in check and motivated. NaNoWriMo accomplishes this by setting deadlines and peer communication in much of the same way an educational institution might, but without the fear of consequence or repercussion of failure. And failure is always an option with NaNo, but it is something I’ve succeeded in as well, so I know it’s possible. So now, I just have to figure out what to write.
I recently picked up a spotless copy of Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried, which was a favorite of mine in college. I learned about the book via my first fiction teacher, Nolan Belk (who I just found on Facebook. Hi Nolan!), as he compared a short story of mine to O’Brien’s work.
What I am learning from this reading of the book is less about the content (it’s a Vietnam war novel as seen through the eyes of a group of soldiers) and more about the way the story is structured. Comprised of a series of short stories as told through several voices, The Things They Carried is still a cohesive piece. The stories tell the same tale, but the use of different narrators and situations give a fuller picture of the world O’Brien has created, and that’s something I really admire and would like to harness in my own work.
The other book I recently rediscovered was a favorite from my childhood—perhaps you loved it, too— Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar. Again, this is a collection of stories that can stand alone quite nicely, but also make up a comprehensive and cohesive piece of literature when bound together.
I can think of other examples, but these two books coming back into my life around the same time have given me enough to get started on some ideas. I’ll share some things here as I come up with them, because not only do I love writing, I also love writing about writing. Stay tuned, friends.
I have, just not on this blog. Still, pathetic I know.
DJANGO UNCHAINED - New Quentin Tarantino movie with Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz and Leo DiCaprio. Holy moly this will be fantastic.
<p>Indie meets hip-hop and the results are glorious.</p>
Wow, I did NOT expect that, and I’m sure this guy didn’t either. (Honestly, this is very funny. It’s not spam or anything, just something that was on reddit that struck me as being hilarious. (NSFW-ish?)