Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Of Films: Bafflers and Elegies

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer
Starring: Ben Whishaw, Dustin Hoffman, Professor Snape

I heard about the book through Sep, who exclaimed over dinner one night that she wants to get her hands on the novel Perfume, which the movie I’m about to discuss is based on. I trust Sep’s taste for it has never failed me yet, so I decided to find the book meself. Turns out, it’s like looking for a needle in a haystack. Nothing in bookstores, nothing on-line. I’ve also surfed the pirate waves, and came up with nada, zilch, niente. So I just went to a video store and borrowed a copy of the movie which sat gathering flies on the New Releases shelf. I felt a surge of hope when I saw how nobody seems to want to watch it. Hellboy and My Only U is all out, but Perfume remained. It must be more than just crap then. More people like crap nowadays, sells better. And I was right.

Visually gripping, would be my word for the film. How one movie can capture reality so viscerally, I cannot say. I am not sure it was even possible. The theme of the movie felt Harry Potteri-ish, especially with the narration done by John Hurt (I did wonder why the narration sounded British when the story took place in Paris), but you overlook these things because it blends in with what you’re seeing: a seething Paris marketplace, an empty alley, hills, sea, throngs of smelly people. I can also go as far as saying the movie was so sensory (sensorical? Sensual doesn’t seem the right word)fulfilling you can almost smell it as well.

The story is about Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, born under a fish stall and left for dead by his mother. He survives; the mother did not --- she was accused of murder and was hanged. Jean-Baptiste (let’s call him JB) was sent to an orphanage and was dutifully neglected by everyone. But if there’s one remarkable thing about this boy was that his sense of smell is so keen that it’s almost a superpower. It’s as if he can see with his eyes. He can smell a frog laying eggs from yards away. He can smell people from miles away. And his world was about smells, until one fateful day, capturing and preserving scent became his obsession. You know from first on that JB, played by Ben Wishaw, did not grow up right. He had some strange fate waiting for him, in some dark alleyway. And that’s exactly how it played out. His obsession of preserving human scent led him to apprentice himself to Baldini (played by Dustin Hoffman) where he learned of distilling scent. But even this did not suffice him. He needed a way to preserve the scent without liquefying it. With overtures of the mad scientist and tortured artiste in him, he went to learn another way of capturing scent: wrapping them in cloths brushed with animal fat and then condensing the fat to release the single drop of essence. His former mentor Baldini told him of a scent so sublime that everyone who smells would feel like they’re in Paradise. JB wanted this, and to achieve it, he needed to preserve the scent of the most beautiful creatures that walks the earth. He killed 13 virgins, took their essence, and put together the magical perfume. He was caught though, but then he found ways to escape, until he realized he could never escape who he is.

It’s weird that in this film, I found myself rooting for the antihero. I wanted him to find the 13th virgin and successfully capture her scent. It was already clear he was amoral, and there’s an innocence to his actions that bespoke of no evil. Odd, I tell you.

You have to watch it. Nothing blows up. There’s not even much blood. I can’t say it was a beautiful film, but then again, what is beauty? But if you are after cheap thrills, who prefers stuff like Hellboy, I might be able to persuade you to watch by hinting that a mass orgy takes place at the near end of the film.

Ha! I bet that got your attention.

Speaking of the ending, I found it hard to suspend disbelief at the end of the film, and it was only then I realized it was a fantasy story ( I even almost thought it was biographical at one point, my bad). I got muddled a bit, but since every frame was so… beautifully unpretty, I am more than willing to forgive.

Grace is Gone
Starring: John Cusack

Allow me to sing a song to the undersung heroes of Hollywood. One in particular. John Cusack. Hands down, he is one of the most likeable actors out there, and he can play every boring character in the world and make it watch-able. Don’t get carried away though. The movie Grace is Gone isn’t for everyone. It could come across as boring, even. That is, if you have never been touched by either grief or tragedy, or perhaps just oblivious to it.

The film’s story revolves around Stanley (J. Cusack) and his 2 daughters, who are living life without Mom because she’s off fighting the war in Iraq. One day, the feared thing happened: Grace dies in action and Stanley did not know how to break the news to his girls. So he took them on a road trip to Florida, while he gathered the courage he needed to tell them what happened.

No, I did not get any preachy vibes about war or honor throughout the whole movie. It just wasn’t the purpose they wanted to serve, I guess. To me, it felt more like, an Elegy to Grief.

How could one movie get so much of it right?

From the point of knowing Death has come, to the strange personal rituals of trying to recapture sight, sound, feeling, everything and nothing.

Stuff they did that I did:

The Silence – I just needed to be quiet. Tears may flow, you don’t notice, but no actual weeping happens. You try to stay calm, while inside your head you’re too busy screaming to every cell you have in your body to Shut up-- it isn’t happening.

The House Tour – you just walk around in what seems like a haze, but actually, your senses have never been so heightened. You go from room to room, from living area to bathrooms, trying to sense that point in space they used to occupy, increasingly decreasing. So you touch things, you smell them, you talk to inanimate objects, pleading for them to return to you what you’ve just lost.

You go to the car, and you just Sit. You stare at the windshield and notice flecks of dirt. You will look at anything just so you won’t have to think.

You Run Away – for them, it’s Enchanted Gardens in Florida. For me, it’s inside my head. Ran away from pain by assuming responsibilities and pretending you’re not a mess inside. You say you went to Palawan to give yourself a break. You don’t tell anyone that for a fleeting second, you never wanted to go back home.

Fuck, let’s stop this.

I could list all the things that struck me in the movie. But if you’ve never been there, you wouldn’t understand. And if you’ve been there, I don’t need to explain.

Let’s just say, don’t watch the movie when you’re depressed. You might just end up offing yourself. But if it was the right time already, like how I’d like to think it was for me today, it might just restore your soul.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Twilight's Trashed Twosome

Why does every single picture taken of Rob Pattinson and Kirsten Stewart looks like they've just been to a Britney No-Panties Allowed Party? Absolutely looking trashed, in each and every frame. See for yourself.

No love lost between me and the movie OR the book, but believe me, it's not the reason why I'm commenting on this. Well, maybe a little.
On the lighter side, I read on Yahoo that searches on how to achieve Rob Pattinson's hair as Ed Cullen has reached gajillions.
Really? I thought it was fairly obvious. Put on Maximum load, climb into washing machine, ask someone to press start, then go out to hang dry. This is the simpler method, because the other one involves a tornado and the murder of the Wicked Witch of the West.
But for those who seriously, seriously, seriously need to know, here's what the experts have to say about it:
How To Get Rob Pattinson's Hair:
(disappointing, completely devoid of any mention of actual scalping or strand-pulling)
Robert Pattinson: A Critical Analysis of His Hair 2005-2008:
(I failed the examination given at the end; failure never felt such pure pleasure!)


Ten Reasons Why I am being Thankful at 1:59 a.m.:

10. I paid my December membership for Fitness First: 1 more month to go and Im free!!!
9. My back didn't hurt as much today.
8. Ella and I went window shopping at Trinoma and Shang (kaya kahit masakit paa, okay lang)
7. Bought 2 books on sale: Jack of Ravens by Mark Chadbourn and Gentlemen and Players by Joanne Harris
6. I saw Jericho Rosales (sabay-sabay: Jericho!!)
5. We bought lamb chops sa Rustans for our Media Noche (I'm cookin'!)
4. Ella bought me a pink shawl type poncho which makes me feel so Zara.
3. She also bought me a 4g USB and I can finally stash ALL my downloads in it.
2. I finished Wyvern Hall by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes while waiting around in Powerbooks. It was great!
1. I have finally submitted the on-line application form for the UN Democratic Fund Proposal, and I am finally, truly free to enjoy my vacation.

yey for things to be thankful for!!!

Monday, December 29, 2008

I Really Shouldn't...

but hot damn.

He is legal already, right? Younger than my sister, but I've heard heck is a place where age doesn't matter. :)

Thursday, December 25, 2008

OMG, I'm O-L-D!

When did it happen?

My inaanak which I last saw while he was 6 months old is now a towering adolescent.

My twin cousins are now rambuctious nine-year-olds but somehow they still looked like 5-year-olds in my head.

Ella's friends are now managers, models, etc.

Jamie is getting married on January.

I am growing freakin' old, which proves nobdy really knows they're getting older. Everyone feels the same age inside. No wonder so many people are in denial about it.

How old are you?

OMG, I'm O-L-D!

When did it happen?

My inaanak which I last saw while he was 6 months old is now a towering adolescent.

My twin cousins are noew rambuctious nine-year-olds but somehow they still looked like 5-year-olds in my head.

Ella's friends are now managers, models, etc.

Jamie is getting married on January.

I am growing freakin' old, which proves nobdy really knows they're getting older. Everyone feels the same age inside. No wonder so many people are in denial about it.

How old are you?

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Happy Holidays!

I'm not really sure when the holidays started becoming a season of frenetic activity for me. When I was a kid, Christmas was when I relax and watch the adults lead themselves to a frenzy. I guess I really have crossed that threshhold, huh?

Nevertheless, to everyone reading this blog, you're most probably loyal friends. Thus, let me greet everyone a Blessed Christmas and a More Blessed New Year!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Writing Exercise: Point of View

James, age 22, has just had a car accident on his way home from work. No one was injured, but his mother's car was totalled. He arrives home to tell his mother what happened.

First Person:

Oh crap. Oh jolly holy crap. My eyes felt like they were burning in their sockets. The doctor who checked me up after the accident proclaimed I was fine, which means the feverish sensation I’m feeling right now is just all in my imagination. I might just be a trifle terrified about what I’m about to do. You can’t blame me anyhow. How does anyone tell their mother you just wrecked her Honda? I’m standing on her front porch and I can’t even ring the godforsaken doorbell.

“James?” Ma called out from the side path. So she was out back and saw me come in. “What are you doing here so early?”

“Uh… Ma. I have a little news for you.” I sgueezed my hands - open and close. “You see… there was an accident.”

“Accident?” her eyes were quizzical. Then I saw when she realized what I must mean. “Are you hurt?”

I was taken aback. That wasn’t a question I thought of. “Me? No, Ma. Doctor says fine. But your Honda… didn’t survive.”

She shook her head and threw down the towel she was holding. “Are you sure?”

“Yes, it was totally wrecked…”

“I don’t mean the car, James. You can’t possibly think I care more about that lemon than I care about my son. Are you sure you’re fine? The doctor says you can walk around like this?”

“Yes.” Relief flooded out of me in gales. It was fine. It was fine.

“Alright.” She slowly nodded. “Come in though, and sit down. I’m afraid you’ll just faint and hit your head or something awful.” She hurried me in and closed the front door. She plucked at my collar, checked for bruises, and all in all did that Mother Tigress thing with her cubs. When she was satisfied, she gave a brief sound of satisfaction and then she raised an eyebrow.

“Now, when you said wrecked, how wrecked is totally wrecked?”

Oh jolly holy crap.

Third Person: Omniscient

James stood at his Ma’s front porch sweating profusely even though it was already the middle of October and the cooler winds of autumn blows through Vermont. The doctor who checked him after the accident said he was one lucky chap and he was good to go. It isn’t shock then or a concussion doing this to him. He just had no idea how to tell his Ma he totalled her car. He stood there, staring at the doorbell, trying to think of reasons why he’d rather not be there at the moment.

“James?” His Ma called out from the side of their house, the path leading to the back of the house. She had been storing some tools in the shed and was just cleaning up when she heard James come in. “What are you doing here so early?”

James took a gulp of air before speaking. “Uh… Ma. I have a little news for you.” His hands were shaking a little, opening and closing his palms as if he was trying to squeeze something out of them. “You see there was an accident.”

His Mom raised a quizzical eyebrow. “Accident?” Her eyes surveyed James clothes, his face, his feet. “Are you hurt?”

James’ eyes widened, not comprehending the question. “Me? No, Ma. Doctor says I’m fine. But your Honda… did not survive.”

She threw down her towel and shook hr head. She advanced upon James making the boy wince a little. “Are you sure?”

“Yes, it was totally wrecked…”

“Oh, I don’t mean the car. I meant you! You can’t possible think I care more about that lemon than my own son!” Her hands were trembling as she opened the front door. “Are you sure? Can you walk around like this?”

“Yes.” His eyes watered with relief.

“Alright.” She slowly nodded. “Come in though, and sit down. I’m afraid you’ll just faint and hit your head or something awful.” She hurried him in and closed the front door. She plucked at his collar, checked for bruises, and just stopped short of licking James like her little tiger cub. When she was satisfied, she gave a brief sound of satisfaction and raised an eyebrow.

“Now, when you said wrecked, how wrecked is totally wrecked?” her voice had sudden steel in it.

James knees buckled from underneath. He never knew what hit him.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

It's Not the Book, It's Me

I have just been reading a crappy book. It’s by Sophie Kinsella, who I don’t personally consider crappy at all, except that the genre is crappy. It’s crappy but it’s good. For a chick lit. It’s her latest book, Remember Me. I hate it. I hate that it’s making me so want things that I really want. And for making these things so far away from where I am standing in right at this moment.

Where am I standing in this moment?

Actually, I’m sitting. Typing on my laptop. Inside a seedy room in a provincial inn somewhere off the coast of Bataan. I just finished reading a book where the protagonist lost her memory, woke up rich, fabulous and married to a gorgeous fascist, but found out she wants to be her old self again. And in the end, she finds herself with her old friends and with her one true love.

And it brought me to remember my daddy. Not that I consider my Dad as my one true love, that’s sick. I love him with all of my soul, but I think I remembered him because the guy being described in the book felt like my Dad. I think I have an idea how my Mummy felt meeting him. Call it some psychological complex, but there can’t be anything wrong wanting to meet a man who would someday be as wonderful as the man who raised you. THAT can’t be at all bad. I miss them so damn much. I haven’t stopped hurting, and I want it to stop, but not want it to fade. I am driving myself completely nucking futs.

And I want my Jon (which is the name of the guy in the book, not an actual person I know). Except that I don’t want to marry some businessman wanker who invoices me for stuff I broke inside our marital house first before meeting my Jon. (Don’t ask me to explain, just read the book)

Lately, situations have been driving the point why nobody seems to want me. Incident after incident, the message coming across is, lose weight, claim your beauty and win the world. Except that, I don’t want to believe that being slim is the only thing amiss with me. I’m too smart to believe growing thinner will be the solution to my problem. I refuse to accept the world can be so shallow (or that I am). But a part of me suspects that I refuse to accept this because then I would have to do something about it. Do something that will make me absolutely feel crappy about how I look, regardless of how I have tried so verrrry hard to be a shining example of humanity in other aspects. It’s not enough. I am incomplete. Flawed. Unwanted.

And insane to be introspecting after reading a crappy genre book. I want to laugh. But if I do, I might end up crying. So I’ll just roll into this tight fetal ball, in my rented bed, and pretend the world is spinning very, very fast around me. Freud could go kiss my a**.

Monday, December 15, 2008

I Was Nice Today

Oh my freakin' gosh. I scared myself today by making an effort to be nice. I mean, I had to exert actual effort to remind myself to do the kind, patient thing. I guess I don't spurt rainbow off my ass nowadays anymore. It's something I have to concentrate on now.

What happened?

I think for a long while I have convinced the world, and even myself, that I am a nice person. I really don't know where I made the wrong left turn.

But today reminded me how being nice gets you nice things in return. The world was nicer today. Like it used to. Before the earth opened up to swallow me whole.

For example:

1. I decided to give up an hour to help out in a research being done by a sister of a workmate. In the end, she gave me National Bookstore GCs.
2. I decided to temper my anger about a woman who was late for our meeting. Now, I can stand being in the same room with her. AND -- I learned I was part of a free lunch being sponsored by one of our member companies.
3. I did not whine to Ian about his decision no to go to the lunch or hate him for not bringing his car making it difficult for us to get back to Intramuros. I realized I was treating my good friend as an actual driver. Omg. The world nodded and sent us an FX whose driver went out of his way to drop us off route for some yet unknown reason. So we practically went down in front of our office.
4. Ian then offered to buy the training stuff with me -- to drive me to the grocery and bring it back to PBSP so I don't have to lug it to fairview and back. Which saves me a lot of trouble.
5. After buying the groceries for training, we decided to have dinner and I decided to be nice to the waitress at Flapjacks. Guess what? She gave me a Php 500 gift certificate for something I badly needed.

I think the world is trying to teach me to be nice again. Y'know, reminding me of the benefits of being an affable creature. I don't expect to have a reward for every good turn I do, but I'm not complaining til it lasts.

I'm trying. I'm really trying. So help me God. :)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

The Worst Movie I Have Ever Seen 2008

I know I have flamed a lot of movies already, and I tend to be spicier when the movie is irrevocably bad. Yet a lot of the bad movies I watched sunk to oblivion. I wouldn't even bother writing about it. I just regret the few hours I battered my brain with it. But there are some out there that just needs to be... let's put it this way, people need to know not to bother with it. I'm doing God's work, methinks.

That's how I feel about this confused, poor-everything (acting, plot, writing, directing, script... the list can go on forever) movie that happens to be called Dedication. Mandy Moore is in it. That should explain everything, actually (think Walk to Remember and magnify the pathetic acting seven-fold). Why I even gave this movie a chance can be summarized into two words: Billy Crudup. Hunky, almost-can-act... almost. But for some reason, he is the main reason why this movie feels so sluggish. Wargh. Just remembering it makes me want to bite somebody hard.

Plot: Crudup is a comic book writer and his illustrator partner (the illustrious Tom Wilkinson) dies. Mandy Moore steps in to draw the mass blockbuster Marty the Beaver. Happens that, Crudup's charcter is a jerk, loser, butt-wipe, (insert word of choice here). So the whole movie revolves around his mental and emotional handicap and how he struggles as he falls in love with Moore.

The whole thing was a limp, bloody mess. If you don't believe me, go watch it and prepare for a cranial hemorrhage. Seriously.

The GOOD News:

The good thing about watching Dedication though is that everything pales in comparison to its rottenness. You will watch anything just to get the sour taste out of your mouth. It was so bad that I actually went out to pay to watch Twilight. Surprise, the film was actually a relief.

I think it was a better movie, than it was a book... something I don't usually agree with. But nevertheless, it felt a little confused, undercooked, a little TH here and there. But as I said, I am NOT complaining after watching Mandy Moore look through a telescope... AGAIN.

Ella thought it was okay, but even she, who loved High School Musical and touted it as a master opus agreed that there were cheesy parts. But she endured it because I think she secretly likes Robert Pattinson but couldn't tell me in fear of being torn to pieces. I guess she doesn't know that I concede that Robert Pattinson is NOW Edward Cullen. Even in my head.

Gads, I wish he could act just a teensy bit better, but after Mandy Moore, Pattinson might actually deserve an Oscar. I mean, throw the guy a bone. He tried really, really, really hard. And he almost got there, missing believability just by seventeen miles. And I like him. Because he's a Frodo trying to conquer Mount Doom. Look at what he had to endure: Acting with pancake face and loony hair while personifying a tough-guy-but-not-really-wait-i'm-a-killer-but-oh-not-really who just fell in love with a limp, ansty-but-not-really teenaged girl.... whew!

The only time he outrageously (as opposed to conservatively) disappointed me was when he stood under the sunlight. I was expecting a spectacular sparkle, you know, like almost-blinding sparkle, like a small star. But instead, he wussy-sparkled. I mean, that glittering stuff on him was laaaaame. My Sally Hansen nail polish sparkles better. But that's not his fault. It's the make-up department's bad.

Oh, and Bob's waaaaaay better than the guy who played Jasper. Did you see his acting intepretation of "the one who looks like he's in pain"? He looked electrocuted and constipated at the same friggin' time.

I'm a little disappointed with Kirsten Stewart as well. Where's the spunky girl I saw in Panic Room? Completely dissolved to a confused, passive-aggressive teenager who likes boys that sparkles like Sally Hansen in sunlight.

And Doctor Carlisle looked like a Munster. How in the world was that guy cast as a Doctor? I was half-expecting somebody to jump out and say "You got Punkd!"

But I'm not going to complain. I will actually give it a C+, when I fully expected to give it a fat, thick D-. And it had some wow moments in it:

a. When Edward speed-walked up the mountain while carrying Bella
b. The view of the valley that time Edward took Bella on top of trees (beats hhww in Luneta, I admit).
c. Jacob Black. Yummy. I can almost forget he was Lava-boy.

Bloodless the film might be. But it saved me from from having nightmares about Mandy Moore. I know how to be thankful.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Talking Through Static

Aang versus Pac-man

Ella and I took advantage of yesterday’s nationwide lull in Christmas commotion due to Pacquiao’s fight. While it seemed the whole world was fixated about two grown men having fisticuffs, we gloried in the almost empty malls, and the clear streets. With our combined powers, we have completed everything in our to-buy and to-do list. We even got home by 4 p.m. giving me enough time to finally finish the last 4 episodes of The Avatar (Go Aaang!)

I didn’t even know Pacquiao won until today. I guess that’s good. But I really do hope he’ll lose someday soon. You know, for his own good. Too many wins might make a champion a loser, if you catch my drift.

Geez. Something is really wrong with me. I’m rooting for a cartoon character, and couldn’t care less about a real, live champion of the people (daw). On the same vein though, Aang will never be corrupted, because he freakin’ doesn’t exist. Pacquiao is human, rendering him corruptible. Do I need to flip a coin? (Stay away from commenting if you are one of those “Let’s trust humanity, peeps.” I know your game, I’m still sometimes you)

Marky Cielo

I got the shock of my life when I learned Marky Cielo has died. And I can’t even create any sarcastic comments about it because I genuinely liked and rooted for this guy. Of course, it crossed my mind that the death might be drug-related, which would totally ruin the image I have of him inside my screwed-up head. I dread knowing what caused his death, because I think I desperately need him to be the good guy. Even if I never even met him. He was just one of those people who makes you think the world can’t be all that bad while somebody like him lives in it.

The shallow part of me wept because I was also daydreaming about marrying the guy, or at least, have a picture taken with him. The saner, wiser part of me grieves because such a promising young life was cut short. I don’t get to like masa-actors that much, so it’s really something to be this affected about a stranger’s death. I sincerely hope it wasn’t just a careless mistake. I sincerely pray he’d be in a better place. Kind of enviable, actually.

Olivia the B

I have a confession to make, I’ve been meaner than usual lately. I goad my workmates, I flip sarcasm unto them like honey on …..something that honey sticks to. I even goad my best friend at work because I know he would never ever fight back. Sa MRT, if people push me, I push back. And hello, I’m a walking pison, if I mean to be. I don’t care if may mapa-upo pa. They started it. Don’t mess with me. One time, I actually caught myself narrowing my eyes into slits because I was planning to roughly elbow the ditz who stopped dead on her tracks in a one-lane path. I have become a one-woman Mafia. I don’t know what’s happening to me. All this anger and distrust…. Eyuucch. It feels bad. But I can’t stop. I just want to hurt people, and I’ll grab what little excuse I can get to do it. I wonder who fucked me up this way? This isn’t me. But I won’t take suffering quietly anymore. I just can’t stand hurting, so I’ll hurt them too.

Talk about living on the fast lane to either Mandaluyong or Bilibid.

I’m hoping this behavior will fade by the time the holidays are over. Christmas hurts, deal with it. But if I don’t get nicer, I’ll be the first to ask for professional help, I promise.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

How to Write Like Stephenie Meyer

  • Treat your audiences as if they have never read romance novels before. Don’t shy away from gooey clichés such as “You are my life now.” They became clichés because people liked them. Suck the money out of it; bleed it dry.

  • Make your primary character as physically flawless as possible. Then put a lot of angst into him to make him adorably flawed. Make his bad side as pretty as possible.

  • Speaking of adorably flawed, counteract angst with Claire de Lune. Debussy is like, the original rebel emo…

  • Choose a passive-aggressive heroine. One as confused as a headless chicken. Make her a damsel-in-distress but make her hate it --- and voila! You transcended a stereotype already.

  • Sex is out. Sexual tension is in. Make them wanna, but don’t let them do it for a long, long, long, long time. Make sex dangerous for both of them. Learn from Buffy and Angel (LOSE YOUR SOUL). Learn from Buffy and Spike (LOSE YOUR BAD). Learn from Buffy and Freddie Prinze Jr. (LOSE YOUR CAREER)

  • Defy vampire lore. But not all of them. Retain their unearthly beauty but invent everything else. Sparkly vampires under the sun are new. To someone who probably hasn’t heard of Shimmer make-up (refer to Revlon).

  • Throw in your SOC 1 mini-thesis about different types of vampires that you scammed of Google. Word count COUNTS. (refer to Nanowrimo)

  • Throw in Rosemary’s Baby into your plot. If the book has a fifth installment, I’m sure Freddy Kreuger and Jason would want a cameo too.

  • Freak things up by naming the cute vampire baby Renesmee. Then freak it up some more by imprinting her to the werewolf guy the heroine dumped for the vampire. Everybody has somebody now. It’s nice to be so tidy. Snip, snip.

    Follow these tips and you’ll have a sure blockbuster in your hand. Adolescents will line up to buy your book. They will fight over who plays your vampire hero. They will attend parties in the movie’s honor. The film will gross millions. Your name will be up there with JK Rowling and… JK Rowling.

    You will be --- IMMORTAL!

    (Cue end music: FAME! I wanna live forever! Blah, blah, blah like a flame. Fame! I’m gonna make it to heaven, You’ll remember my name!)

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

My New Old Crush

So you know about my fascination with James McAvoy (gads, who doesn't?).

And how, after 10 years, I still sometimes wish Ryan Agoncillo met me first.

Or whenever I see a Friends re-run, I find myself thinking I wouldn't mind a Ross in my life.

And since we're talking imaginary here, throw in Harry Dresden to that mix.

Well, I can add somebody new to that list today. I want a Jim Clancy all to myself.

Jim who, you say? Well, blame it on OD-ing on Season 4 of the Ghost Whisperer. Jim Clancy is Melinda Gordon's husband on the show. For some twisted reason, I like Jennifer Love Hewitt. And I love the idea of Jim Clancy (played by David Conrad). The handsome, strong, stable husband who supports his wife even if most people think she's cuckoo.

My sister did comment that Jim Clancy is a little too wussy for her. Well, of course, FOR HER, stable isn't a necessary characteristic of "The One." They will bore each other to death. I, on the other hand, am in constant danger of going off-kilter.

So of course, I am smitten with David Conrad. He probably isn't anything like the character he plays for all I know, but I remedied that.

Imagine my surprise when I googled him and found out he's, like, ancient already. He was born in 1967 and even if I'm no good with Math, I know enough to realize he's already 41 years old. But... he studied in Brown and graduated in Julliard, and he turned down blockbuster movies to act on stage. Sigh. He's gorgeous. Probably inside, and definitely out.

Gosh, that isn't the face of a 40-year-old. And much as I tease my best gff for liking fuddy-daddies, this one, I wouldn't mind at all. Not at all.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Of Bizzare Bazaars and Christmas Senti

I am not a big fan of bazaars.

Not usually.

I think it's just a glorified tiangge where sellers try to convince you that you are getting stuff for less the price. Which is usually untrue. But not always.

When Ella got complimentary tickets to the Noel discovery bazaar @ the World Trade Center, stars lit up her eyes. Seriously. And I discovered that excitement could really be that contagious because I somehow forgot how unpleasant shopping could be when you're being jostled by a gajillion people to look at stuff you could see in Greenhills anyway. But I have to admit that there were a couple of good finds. Bracelets, blouses, jackets, cool beaded bookmarks. We completed 2/3 of our joint Christmas list and we only spent Php 1,575 for everything. I mean, that's some serious savings.

And serious savings is what I have planned for this Christmas. Unfortunately, I cannot go wild with Christmas gifts this year because of financial constraints. I think I'll go for the thoughtful gift rather than the personalized "it's-so-you" thing I usually try to do. I'll go for senti just this once. I hope my friends forgive me. :)

Christmas dinner might also be simplified. I mean, how much food will Ella, Ryan and I need to get through Noche Buena? I'm pretty sure we'll be spending it on our own. Maybe I' even looking forward to it.

The thing with my Christmas senti is that --- I can feel it more now. You know, the emptiness. Last year, we were prepared for tthe worst. We buffered ourselves against grief. People were also extra sensitive and gave soooo much encouraging words. It was after all the first Christmas without both of our parents. But this year, the second Christmas, everybody assumes, us included, that things will get better. We did get through the first, right? So what's a second or a third or a fourth?

Not so buffered. Underestimated. Emptier now than last year. Because now, it's for real. They really are gone. Last year wasn't a test. It was real.

Weird enough, I like the emptiness now. There's less false courage. Without the bravado, the emotions are authentic. Maybe without the coddling from people, we'll move on faster.

Or it could break us.

Break us and God will remake us. Reshape us.

Maybe this is the kiln that'll keep making us stronger.