I went to see Lego Movie with Neil last night thinking it would be a total crapshoot. A movie made to sell more toys. Wow. Hollywood has no boundaries these days!
Then I quickly realized that the movie was amazing. Stop-motion Lego animation over cheesy graphics? Andy from Parks and Rec? Parallel universes riffing on different Lego franchises? Batman being there but in a no-big-deal way? A Tegan and Sarah song that will be stuck in my head forever? Yes. My boyfriend said he literally “smiled the whole time.” It’s that good.
Clearly they had taken a stinker of a brief for a movie: Make Legos seem relevant even as they start to make Legos just for girls, or Harry Potter Legos or whatever the eff. And then they handed it to a bunch of genius writers, directors and voice actors.
The movie even had a cool message - be creative, break the rules, believe in yourself, grounded with a cautionary ‘watchout’ to its own message (you can only break the rules once you’ve learned them).
My only wish for the movie was that it could have been a little less conflict-driven and taken some time to stretch its legs in the fun, imaginative, lovely, funny universe they had created. I wanted more time in the dog head where all the famous Legos hang out.
The whole thing made me feel optimistic about the weird, selly-outy-ness of Hollywood. If we’re going to do it, we might as well employ great people to do it. I even felt pleasantly surprised by the movie Battleship. I expected utter stupidity and got a pretty cool alien movie starring Tim Riggins! Yeah. I’ll take it.
Anyway, I can’t stop thinking about Lego movie. It was so good. Go see it.
“Do what you love” disguises the fact that being able to choose a career primarily for personal reward is an unmerited privilege, a sign of that person’s socioeconomic class. Even if a self-employed graphic designer had parents who could pay for art school and cosign a lease for a slick Brooklyn apartment, she can self-righteously bestow DWYL as career advice to those covetous of her success.
If we believe that working as a Silicon Valley entrepreneur or a museum publicist or a think-tank acolyte is essential to being true to ourselves — in fact, to loving ourselves — what do we believe about the inner lives and hopes of those who clean hotel rooms and stock shelves at big-box stores? The answer is: nothing.
“Like Girls, Broad City is part of a welcome new crop of comedies that treat New York – especially contemporary, moneyed, John Varvatos CBGB store New York – in decidedly un–Alicia Keys terms. It’s the concrete jungle where dreams are made up and then quickly drowned in a $14 cup of cold-pressed acai juice. It’s the accumulation of bad dates, worse days, rent checks, and trash trucks that can make a twentysomething feel ancient, even if she acts like an ornery teen.”
why everyone on t.v. cheats and doesn't know about abortions
i’m working on writing a novel for probably the first time in my life (despite a false start at age 22 that i plan to dig up if i can find it and finish someday). i don’t want to jump the gun and act like i am suddenly an expert. it’s a lot harder than i imagined it would be. but i have realized a couple things.
for one, affairs and pregnancies are amazing catalysts. that is why everyone in every show and book is a big giant cheater and why whenever people in movies get pregnant it’s not like, “oh time to get an abortion” it’s “time to awkwardly mash two unlike people together cuz BABY. let the plot-fodder ensue!”
so i’m trying to resist having all my characters have affairs and accidental pregnancies, but it’s really a lot harder than you’d think. if people ever read my book, i hope they will not think, “gee becky is obsessed with affairs and accidental pregnancies.” all writers are cuz those situations make things go.
the main, healthy takeaway here is to know that people in real life are probably not having as many dramatic affairs as books and movies would lead you to think. but they are having way more abortions.
”Yeah. And I think one big mistake… Girls are trained to say, ‘I wrote this, but it’s probably really stupid.’ Well, no, you wouldn’t write a novel if you thought it was really stupid. Men are much more comfortable going, ‘I wrote this book because I have a unique perspective that the world needs to hear.’ Girls are taught from the age of seven that if you get a compliment, you don’t go, ‘Thank you’, you go, ‘No, you’re insane.’ “
Could she always take a compliment? “No, I had to learn to go, ‘Thank you.’ Because it’s much easier to go, ‘Thank you so much, I’m actually a huge piece of shit who has no worthy things to offer the world, so I appreciate that you said that.’ “
This interview is pretty good http://www.theguardian.com/culture/2014/jan/11/lena-dunham-called-fat-hideous-and-i-lived
I can’t wait till someone invents the Squarespace of college. Pay $10 a month and get an amazing education on your computer. Your iPad. Why does that not exist?
I have been out of college for 3.5 years, and am still learning every day just using my iPad, with apps like Duolingo and Human Japanese. I look back at my college education, which left me with exactly the national average amount of debt (25k), and wonder what I really got out of it.
I made lots of friends. I went out drinking. I had roommates and antics and adventures. I spent a lot of unstructured time reading and writing about things I was very interested in, like literary translation. At the time I felt like I was mostly paying thousands of dollars to take an amazing, thought-provoking, break from the realities of life. I was right.
Was this time necessary for my development? It was fun, that’s for sure. If anything it made it really hard for me to be ready for the structure and intensity of a 9-5 career. Did I learn things that I could only learn in college? Definitely not. With all the technological resources around today, learning Spanish verbs or having an engaging debate about differance can easily happen w/o paying thousands of dollars a semester.
I’m not trying to speak for everyone. College is necessary for people who want to become doctors and lawyers and “skilled professionals.” But if you want to be a writer? Probably not.
I just bought a car and my interest rate is .9%. I had never thought about what my interest rate on my college loans was, because I signed up for them when I was 18. I assumed my interest rates were very low though, because it’s college and the government does the loaning, and you know, they probably want to give you a great deal. I recently found out the interest on my federal loans averages at a rate of 6.8%. Wow, Honda gave me a great deal in comparison. Now my Delta SkyMiles card gives me a 13% interest rate, so it could be worse. But at least I get to fly for free once a year or so.
So following the 10-year plan they set up for me (cuz there aren’t really 5-year plans, none that I could find, cuz they want you to pay as much interest as possible), I would be paying at least 15k extra in interest. (Maybe it’s crass to talk about money like this but no one really does it, which makes it really hard to understand how to manage your money.)
Anyway, what I’m saying is that college seems extremely bloated, inefficient and behind-the-times considering all the educational resources we now have thanks to iPads et al. And it has the audacity to continue getting more expensive!
As a final thought, I want to list the parts of college that I did get a lot from.
-Language courses. There is nothing like taking a language class from a native speaker, and you can’t do that with your iPad. At the U of M, any class you take over 13 credits is free, so I loaded up my schedule with free language courses every semester. Learn a bunch of languages while you are there! I had some really cool teachers, especially in Chinese.
-The Freud classes I took with Melissa Licht. She is a great teacher, and those completely changed the way I looked at myself, society and my family.
-All of Qadri Ismail’s English classes. Find teachers who tell you the truth about life. You can’t get that from an iPad. If you go to the U of M, take his classes!
-Astronomy and all the other classes that weren’t part of my liberal arts degree. I learned about how the universe works a little bit, and also keeping a moon diary made me realize, uh, nevermind.
-Working at The Minnesota Daily and all my journalism internships. Those are what taught me actual skills and helped me get a job.
So the moral of my story is, don’t just take ‘thinking’ classes in college (you can think outside of college, and the whole rest of your life), have internships and learn a lot of languages. Maybe someday we’ll get some kind of app that will replace college or some institution that just makes people have internships instead. But for now don’t give school too much of your money!
Physics says: go to sleep. Of course
you’re tired. Every atom in you
has been dancing the shimmy in silver shoes
nonstop from mitosis to now.
Quit tapping your feet. They’ll dance
inside themselves without you. Go to sleep.
Geology says: it will be all right. Slow inch
by inch America is giving itself
to the ocean. Go to sleep. Let darkness
lap at your sides. Give darkness an inch.
You aren’t alone. All of the continents used to be
one body. You aren’t alone. Go to sleep.
Astronomy says: the sun will rise tomorrow,
Zoology says: on rainbow-fish and lithe gazelle,
Psychology says: but first it has to be night, so
Biology says: the body-clocks are stopped all over town
History says: here are the blankets, layer on layer, down and down.
”—Albert Goldbarth, “The Sciences Sing a Lullaby” (via oofpoetry)
“A common denominator in these cases is alcohol, often copious amounts, enough to render the young woman incapacitated. But a misplaced fear of blaming the victim has made it somehow unacceptable to warn inexperienced young women that when they get wasted, they are putting themselves in potential peril.”—
I’ve started to do vegan before 6 (the halfsie vegan diet popularized by Mark Bittman) this week. It has really forced me to cook for myself and also to realize that animal products are in 90% of everything. By that I mean they are in chocolate and chocolate is everything. Also cheese.
When I do cook I usually just make up recipes out of my head. I figure I might as well write down the recipes I come up with so I can remember them in the future.
Here’s one for this wild rice dish. (Points for being Minnesotan and seasonal as heck!)
-Sweet pepper (if you like, a lot of people hate them)
-Hot Chili Powder
Put the sweet potato in the oven at 450 while you watch Breaking Bad. Start boiling water for your wild rice too. Proceed to cook the wild rice like you would any other rice but for longer. Don’t worry that the water’s brown. It’s not caramelizing it, that’s just the dark brown color of the rice.
Take the potato out after your show and cut off the skin.
Simmer garlic and onion in olive oil on a low heat. Add a bit of water and add chopped up tomatoes, carrots and pepper. Add lemon juice, spices and other flavorful things. Cut up your sweet potato and add that.
When your rice is done, toss it in the pot. Let it sit in there and cook with everything else so it absorbs all those flavors.
When it’s done and in your tupperware or whatever, add some chopped-up mint.
Pro tip: Buy your veggies at the farmer’s market to feel extra vegan, locavore whatever and also to save some money and get more colorful tomatoes and peppers. Buy yourself some flowers like I did!
I just tried this for lunch and it’s good and more hearty than the other vegan thing I made (recipe to come later).
Season one I thought Daniel would actually fall in love with someone else while engaged to Emily and she would help him escape his mother by fake death so he could and run off w/ the girl Victoria hates. Didn’t happen. (But what was the point of her helping him make amends with girl he put in a wheelchair then?)
If the Margaux plot this season leads to that then … called it. Right here. I hope that happens cuz that would be an interesting plotline IMO, better than Daniel just being a puppy boy.
The Random Things You Know - Keeping Them Secret vs. Correcting People
We all have worked hard in life to learn random things, like Latin noun declensions or types of birds or U.S. presidents.
There comes a time in your life when you realize the random things you know will hardly ever be put to use. The only time you can really use them is by correcting people.
You can either go on your whole life correcting people or you could just not. You could accept that you learned something that isn’t really applying to your life but be glad you have that knowledge anyway. You could accept that you didn’t learn it for that one great moment when you get to correct someone and feel excited at the chance to look smart. Cuz almost always you will look more annoying than smart.
This is something we all realize about something we know eventually.
I was sad when I realized the languages I studied should not even be put to use correcting people. This is America. They don’t care.
Everyone should just join a trivia team because that is the only place that some things we know will ever come up.