Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Three Interesting Things

With the holidays blogging is light, so let's do a quick three interesting things.
1. This interview with Leslie Odom Jr., who plays Aaron Burr in "Hamilton" has some amazing discussion of performance, and the job of live theater that I think are applicable to many other things, as well, as just being very interesting by itself.
3.And I am fascinated by this lamp that looks like a book.

Monday, December 21, 2015

The Internet Makes Me Happy

There's a lot of talk out there, in this day of social media about how the internet keeps us in touch with people we normally would have let fall by the wayside. And I understand that the changing boundaries of things, make these discussions important, but I think what gets less attention is that these same things allow you to keep relationship fires burning where marriages, kids, jobs, and other adult life crazy might just have made it not harder to keep up, but feel more like, well, I haven't talked to them in months, I can't call now.  Of course, good friends will always be thrilled to hear from you, but it's easy to let the angst around that build up until in some part of your brain it seems less risky to do nothing and risk losing touch completely than to reach out and risk being that friend who thinks you are still friends. (The brain can be a twisty place sometimes.)
So, in the last few months I have had the chance to travel up to hang out with a friend from long ago summer camp to celebrate a round birthday, to reconnect with an old roommate and her friends who live just far away enough in Maryland these days that we have to plan to hang out or it doesn't happen, visit with a friend who's life has taken her to the other side of the country, and I have some more reconnecting and gathering plans on the calendar for 2016.  I also hung out with knitting and book club friends that I see more regularly but all of whom I met through means internet.  So, the internet has helped fill and keep full my life with wonderful people and I am very grateful. 

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Three Interesting Things

1. This piece about a TV show's reflection on loving someone with depression was wonderful.
2. This piece on the #Ham4Ham shows that the "Hamilton" cast has been putting on is amazing, in part because I wonder if this will be a thing we see other shows do, or if it ends up being a uniquely "Hamilton" thing.  Either way, I know the chance to scroll through the videos the people at these mini-shows have done have brought me a ton of entertainment. 
3. No matter how pervasive a pop culture item is, there's alwaye someone who has not seen/read/heard that one.  Sometimes it still feel like you have.  Here is one person's guess at what "Star Wars" is like.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Joy - A Movie Trailer Pondering

I used to read about all the new movies coming out, so that by the time trailers started rolling around (well, mostly, there's alway that one that's like coming to you in about four more seasons) they were additive information.  But with peak TV and books keeping me so well occupied, I have become less vigilant one the movie front. I still know what's out, but I have less prior knowledge.  And with "Joy" this has become an interesting experiment.  I have seen a trailer in the theatres, I have seen multiple versions on TV, and I could not tell you what it's about.  I mean, it's clearly about a woman, who I assume is named Joy, and she apparently does a thing that seems to make both her and the people around her very happy.  And...that's all I got.  In one version she says something about her business, and in another someone says she's never run a business, so I'm guessing she runs a business?  But it strikes me as a very interesting way to try to draw me to this movie.  Now perhaps, with the amazing cast and award winning director, they are assuming that's mostly what I need to know and all other info is superfluous.  And you could certainly argue that this is an improvement over movie trailers that appear to run through the whole plot.  But given that this movie is true story, the vagueness are a little strange. We could argue that everyone knows who Joy is, but my completely informal sampling of my friends does not indicate that to be so.  And certainly, there are some movies that follow a template of sorts.  Sports movies, and new business movies tend to have a scrappy person no one thought could do it, go off, fail a bit, and then do it. So maybe this is all I need.  But it does make me wonder if they are intentionally obscuring something.

Note: I did see a TV interview with the cast, where the reporter mentioned that the movie was about Joy Mangano, who they referred to as a home shopping mogul. The cast itself talked more about process, although certainly they may have edited out parts where they discussed the movie's subject.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Three Interesting Things

1. An update on the Dear Author/Ellora's Cave lawsuit with a note that the money, and the revised original post make me quite certain that almost no one "won" this.
2. There was a dustup over WNDB's use of Hannukah to fundraise, and here's a good storify of the issues that were raised.
3. I am fascinated by this cake that through the magic of science turns into a multi-layer cake.

Monday, December 07, 2015

Some Days Call For Cats

Some days just call for a listicle of cats fighting the patriarchy.  If that's where you are, here you go.

Thursday, December 03, 2015

Three Things About Gun Violence

I find myself unable to be silly today, so apologies if you came here today to escape the coverage. I made a rule for myself a while back that when the world irritated me I would attempt action of some sort.  Obviously the scale of wrote another article slamming things that female people like to mass shooting is very different. 
1. Spend money.  Buy books about things. Give money to organizations that are working towards things.
2. Make my thoughts known.  Having a non-voting congressperson changes this somewhat, but I have thoughts I want the politicians who represent me to know.  I recognize that they won't always do exactly as I wish, at both the local and national level, but I sure as heck don't want them unaware of my thoughts on issues of importance to me.  Even if this just means the intern who opens the mail (or email) makes another tally on the spreadsheet, I want it counted.
3. Place blame correctly.  It is not race, religion, or mental illness that causes people to murder others.  It is safe and easy to believe that only people with warped brains would murder people. Or people who look or worship a certain way.  But let's face it, plenty of people of any race, religion, and/or who are suffering from mental illness murdered no one today. 

Wednesday, December 02, 2015

Belated World Aids Day Reflection

It was World AIDS Day yesterday, and that seems like a good time to talk a little about AIDS and HIV. Recently a certain celebrity revealed they are HIV positive.  Not because they wished to share this with the world.  No, instead because they had been blackmailed.  Which sucks.  People in the US have their health information protected by HIPAA. Yes, many places have stipulations that if your health could directly impact another persons (through such things as sexual or bodily fluid contact) you have to disclose it to them, but yeah, last time I checked I had not slept with a celebrity, or engaged in any behavior that meant I needed this information.  So that sucks. 
There are many people working so that there are no new people contracting HIV.  This is an absolutely worthy and achievable goal. Whatever you may think about any celebrity's personal life choices, HIV and AIDS are not punishments.  The disease is not specially able to seek out people of a certain stripe and the only reaction on hearing that someone has contracted an illness, even a treatable if incurable one like HIV is sadness.  No one deserves to be sick.  No one has earned illness.  No one.