Friday, March 16, 2012

Things I've Learned These Last Months

I'm alive! I know it has been an epoch since I last posted. I have spent the past several months focusing on health, work, and my novel-in-progress. And I'm happy to say that over those months, I've wracked up most of my achievements in the wisdom and intelligence categories, with a few in the mishaps and WTF groups.

Here are seven things that I have learned:

1) I am not a prisoner of anyone but myself.

I can give away my power to others in regards to time and opportunity, like I'm the slave of these commitments I make. Or I can seize them all and become extreme overlord of awesome and take control of my life and its course. My time is not someone else's to command. It is mine to prioritize with and I can either choose to do something or not, but the choice is always mine.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Experiment

Well, it's been a while since I last posted. I blame a combination of deadlines and falling under the weather repeatedly. But I'm back with a new update.

My husband and I are trying something new. We've found ourselves trancing in front of the television in our spare time, to the point that plans to be productive after watching our favorite show are all too often sabotaged by our need to get through the backlog on our DVR. It's not uncommon, I think, given how convenient and tailored TV watching has become, but it was becoming an umbilical cord that kept us anchored in the living room and not working on other things. So we decided to do something dramatic.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Review: The Borgias

I have a bone to pick with Showtime's The Borgias mini-series. Now I am a huge fan of Neil Jordan, and have loved his work ever since my jaw slammed into the theater floor during the Crying Game. So I was super excited when I found out we were getting a Tudors meets Godfather style mini-series that he was helming.

The series started off strong but lost me about the fourth episode with its irredeemable characters and the amount of time spent on showing them in the sack. In one of the episodes, we actually see /every/ single member of the Borgia family getting it on, and two of them got an encore showing. Frankly, if it's not moving the story forward or the personal plots, then please, for the love of God, move on to something more interesting.

Here's an idea:

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Bad Guys We Love but Probably Shouldn't

I was watching Se7en the other day and it dawned on me that at the end, I'm actually sort of rooting for the bad guy to get away with it. A serial killer gets my vote for winning the day? What the hell?

So I had to examine why. What is going on in the story that I'm actually cheering for the antagonist to see his wicked plans come to fruition?

Nathan Bransford once mentioned on his blog that characters, even bad characters, have to be redeemable to be likable. I see this. I think it gives us some sympathy and humanity to relate to. Sure, Shaw is a major tool in Jaws, but when he takes a swipe at a higher social class and recites that haunting story of being in the water while sharks ate his war buddies, it draws the audience into his world, his life, and ultimately, his point of view.

I examined Se7en and the antagonist's twisted, brilliant opus, and I had to ask myself if I found him to be a redeemable character. His message is grounded in teaching the world a lesson, and there's something epically Lex Luthorian about how it's executed, especially how he fulfills the last two sins, but I am not sure that his desire to teach humanity a lesson makes him redeemable enough.

Am I just a sucker for brilliant psychopaths in fiction or is something else going on?

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

To Done List!

"I forgot to stretch my butt."

This was my concern as I left the gym after a hard core workout. I wasn't congratulating myself on getting my keister to the gym and actually doing cardio for 35 minutes. I wasn't celebrating a hard work out and some good, responsible stretching afterward. My thought as I left the gym was about how after all of that effort, I forgot to stretch a certain part of my body.

The To Do list is a great way to organize ourselves and to feel accomplished. It lets us tick off those nagging little tasks that worry and chew at the periphery of our free time.

However, to do lists become an albatross when we are focusing on what we haven't done instead of celebrating what we have. When did taking care of 99 out of the 100 things on a day's list become a failure for many of us? An unfinished day?

Obviously we need a shift in perspective. This shift needs to happen in two areas.