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An essay I wrote for my "Metaphysical Messages" class. The original had footnotes, which I don't feel like figuring out how to format in lj, so they're rendered here in brackets and small text (to differentiate them from the copious amounts of parentheticals I seem to use these days). This was written for a comics skeptic, so apologies for anything that comes off didactic.

Invisible Arches )

watchmen

Apr. 17th, 2009 12:37 pm
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Today I am writing an essay about Alan Moore for class. I am actually having Stendahl paroxyms looking at Watchmen. It's like a combination between a panic attack and an orgasm. It feels really bizarre.

I've always been really affected by the book, but I'm having a really hard time writing about it. Reason being that there is so much to notice, built into the structure and the art. I'm overwhelmed by how many ways the book works. It gets me agitated and light-headed when I start to unpack it. It is hard to focus when you are hyperventilating.

This is why I will not see the movie. It can't work the same way. It might be a perfectly viable movie (I don't know, Hodge said it wasn't as bad as most Moore adaptations at least) but it just can't be the astonishing work of art the book is.

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Check out Mari Kasurinen's absolutely amazing My Little Pony mods. Warning: may cause violent geek-gasm.

Among my (predictable) favorites:holy pony paradise batman )

dollhouse

Feb. 8th, 2009 04:51 pm
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On the way home from lunch Hodge and I heard an interview with Joss Whedon about the upcoming Dollhouse.

By the way: Dollhouse? A show pivoting around identity, misogyny, and Eliza Dushku? Was there ever a show more geared towards my own interests?

Anyway, the interview was a little bit obnoxious. Jacki Lyden asks the oft-feminist-lauded Whedon how having a disempowered identityless protagonist who is programmed to have sex with whoever is willing to pay for her when she's not going on crazy black-ops missions is remotely a feminist idea. This would be a reasonable question once, but she grills him on it throughout the whole interview. What makes the interview worth listening to is that Whedon articulates the conundrum of the politically-aware storyteller quite gracefully.

"The fact of the matter is, I've been worried about this. It's kept me up nights. But I believe the best way to examine anything is to go to a dark place," Whedon says. "You can't be a storyteller and a speechwriter at the same time."

This is something I fret over all the time. How do you create art that is dangerous, new, risky, etc., if you're hyperaware of the hegemonic potential of your medium? What if the story you need to tell involves women who are weak? I think part of why Buffy has been meaningful to so many people is that it reflects the power struggles young women face much more accurately than a consistently empowered heroine would. Guess what? We don't live in a world of consistently empowered women. We live in a world where you have to fight to become empowered, and it's so much more meaningful to see a Buffy who is sometimes naive, vulnerable, and powerful, because we know we can count on her to grow and fight exactly the way the rest of us must. I'm assuming Echo, Dollhouse's new heroine, is not going to be passive for a full season. I'm guessing we're going to get some fight out of her, and how satisfying will that be, to see her strength finally push through?

The audio is worth a quick listen (the printed version just paraphrases; the audio will be available later tonight) just to hear Whedon's calm confidence about the power of a narrative to do something that a polemic cannot accomplish.

Also, Dollhouse will be on my television this Friday, so if any of y'all is looking for a spot to watch it give me a ring.

(PS: I obviously fail at livejournal. Apologies. It has been that kind of month.)

eulogies

Sep. 18th, 2008 09:51 am
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I won't cross-post all the beautiful eulogies I've read this week; if you're curious, Nick Mantias over at the Howling Fantods has a pretty complete page set up to keep up with the flood of them.

The one I've liked the most so far is Laura Miller's over at Salon. Miller did one of the better interviews with him post IJ back in 1996, asking what I felt were all the right questions (or at least some of the right questions; it's not a long enough interview to nail him down on all of them). Her eulogy this weekend touched for me on the essence of his work, the essential question of empathy and how difficult it is. She articulates a few things about his work that I've always argued, albeit much more poorly:

a few of Miller's quotes )
I have not yet been able to brave McSweeney's, which is currently posting memories from anyone who had contact with him. But I will say it was a comfort to see that Timothy McSweeney is as devastated and as lost as I feel. It really is bizarre psychic territory, to mourn a person I never met but who affected me so profoundly. What do you do to process a grief like that? Hodge thinks I need to write a eulogy myself, though he seems to have an inflated sense of my status as a Wallace fangirl (it does no good to tell him I am one of many; he thinks I might well be the archfan and thus have a responsibility to the internets to write something brilliant). But I'm not sure what I'd say that Miller hasn't said better, and I'm not sure I can eulogize right now anyway. I'm still doing the Kubler-Ross shuffle.

Anyway...thanks for all the patience and concern in the past week, I love you all. I am doing OK. I have mail for a few of you that has been deferred on account of me being a big old mess but hopefully it'll be on its way shortly.
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Much of the movie was spent singing, very quietly:

"Indiana...Dr. Jones...Indiana...Dr. Jones Jones Jones..."

...to the tune of John Williams' music. I believe this joke (if you can even call it that) was started a few years ago when [profile] drawgirl, [profile] hplovescats and I were busily writing Indiana Jones: The Musical! while tossing back tequila shots. Sing it through once and you'll never be able to hear the theme song again without muttering our perfect lyrics under your breath. 

Logan lust

Apr. 3rd, 2008 11:48 pm
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Today I am grateful for my discovery that Jason Dohring is in fact twenty-five. It makes my crush on him a lot less sketchy than I'd originally feared.
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Ah, procrastination! This meme is perfect for the last weekend of work I have ahead of me this semester.

a. Post a list of 10 TV shows you love (current or cancelled)
b. Have your friends list guess your favorite character from each show.
c. When guessed bold the line and write a little bit about why you like that character (I'll do this by editing the post itself).
d. Post in your own livejournal.

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Meme ganked from [profile] bluescissors76 (AKA Bert).

This feels oddly right, even though it makes me sound more well-balanced than is a reasonable assessment.

Your Score: Snuffleupagus


You scored 58% Organization, 53% abstract, and 50% extroverted!




This test measured 3 variables.


First, this test measured how organized you are. Some muppets like Cookie Monster make big messes, while others like Bert are quite anal about things being clean.


Second, this test measured if you prefer a concrete or an abstract viewpoint. For the purposes of this test, concrete people are considered to gravitate more to mathematical and logical approaches, whereas abstract people are more the dreamers and artistic type.


Third, this test measured if you are more of an introvert or an extrovert. By definition, an introvert concentrates more on herself and an extrovert focuses more on others. In this test an introvert was somebody that either tends to spend more time alone or thinks more about herself.


You are somewhat organized, both concrete and abstract, and both introverted and extroverted.



I bet you didn't think you were Snuffleupagus. Let's find out why.



You are both somewhat organized. You have a good idea where you put things and you probably keep your place reasonably clean. You aren't totally obsessed with neatness though. Alloyius Snuffleupagus (and all Snuffleupagus') is not sloppy by nature, but he moves so incredibly slowly that it is impossible for him to be totally organized.


You both are about equally concrete and abstract thinkers. You have a good balance in your life. You know when to be logical at times, but you also aren't afraid to explore your dreams and desires... within limits of course. Snuffy generally has very basic interests, but he explores his abstract sensitive side when he plays his snuffleflute.


You both are somewhat introverted. Originally Snuffleupagus was very shy and was only Big Bird's invisible friend. However as he has aged he has started to build new friendships with new characters. Like Snuffy, you probably like to have some time to yourself. However, you do appreciate spending time with your friends, and you aren't scared of social situations.

 


The other possible characters are

Oscar the Grouch

Big Bird

Cookie Monster

Ernie

Elmo

Kermit the Frog

Grover

The Count

Guy Smiley

Bert


If you enjoyed this test, I would love the feedback! Also if you want to tell me your favorite Sesame Street character, I can total them up and post them here. Perhaps your choice will win!




Link: The Your SESAME STREET Persona Test written by greencowsgomoo on OkCupid Free Online Dating, home of the The Dating Persona Test

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