Excuse the Dust

Screwing Things Up

Hi folks. As you may have noticed, I’ve been tinkering with the design of my site. I got tired of the fact that my blog had become dominated by links from my Delicious account and embedded videos, so I decided to revamp the structure of things around here. I also felt like freshening things up with a new theme choice. I hope you like it.

Some of the changes were more drastic than others. First off, I deleted all of the posts that were nothing but digests listing my Delicious activity. Although it was nice to have some of those links front-and-center, you can get the same effect by viewing my page on the Delicious website. I decided it was a bit redundant to continually post those links to the front page here. However, they are included in the sidebar in the Lifestream section, along with events from a number of other social websites.

As for the video posts, they’re still here, but I’ve decided to treat them more like a sideblog instead of the major source of content they had become. The most recent video I’ve come across will always be at the top of my sidebar, and any older posts are available on the Watching page.

Part of what this new version of my site means is that the front page may not be updated as often, but when it does get an update, I’m hoping that the posts will be more full of content instead of the shorter posts that have become the norm around here.

Other Great Albums of 2007 (A Few Late Additions)

After reading through the various year-end lists, I tracked down a few of the interesting-sounding albums I hadn’t had a chance to listen to yet, and I discovered a few gems that I’d like to recommend as a sort of coda to my top 10 list:

Iron And Wine - The Shepherd's Dog

1) Iron and Wine – The Shepherd’s Dog

The Iron and Wine cover of “Dark Eyes” from the I’m Not There soundtrack is one of the standout songs on that album, so I decided to give Iron and Wine another listen-to, despite the fact that their Postal Service cover from the Garden State soundtrack was a bit mopey. This album is uniformly great, and if I had started listening to it earlier in the year, it would easily have been in my top 10 list. Rootsy, organic, full of beautiful harmonies and melodies, and highly recommended.

Battles - Mirrored2) Battles – Mirrored

My first exposure to this album was the video for Atlas, which I saw on Subterranean, i.e. the one hour a week (including 20 minutes of commercials) when M2 plays interesting music videos. The video is fairly minimal – just a shot of the band playing in the odd glass cube pictured on their album cover – but it fits the music, which is (mostly) instrumental rock, most of which is also very minimal, and generally composed of repeated percussion and industrial sounds. I’ve been drawn to more and more instrumental music in the past year or so, just because I find it hard to listen to vocal music when I’m reading (even though this was not an issue in my younger years when I had more brain cells…) Anyways, this one has really grown on me, much like similar music by Liquid Liquid did a few years back. “Atlas” and “Race: In” are the standout tracks here, although the band’s sound is a bit abrasive and may not be to everyone’s tastes.

LCD Soundsystem - 45:333) LCD Soundsystem – 45:33

This is actually a re-issue of an iTunes exclusive in a CD form. The new version splits up the formerly 45 minute first track into six parts (essentially the “movements” of the song) and adds on three bonus tracks (two b-sides and a remix). As you might imagine from my top 10 list, I’ve become a huge fan of LCD Soundsystem thanks to their second album. Much like the Battles album, this is primarily instrumental music (kind of a departure for the band), and I actually prefer it for reading because it’s a bit more soothing whereas the Battles album is more up-beat and rock-and-roll. Maybe I’ll use it for walking music when it isn’t so cold outside…

“No Country For Old Men” – Charlie Rose Interview

Part one of this video is a pretty interesting sit-down interview with the Coen brothers, Josh Brolin, and Javier Bardem. If you haven’t had a chance to see No Country For Old Men yet, you may want to hurry up and go see it – it’s one of the best films I’ve seen in a while.

You need to have flashplayer enabled to watch this Google video

A Blast From The Past

So it occurred to me recently that Google Video will let you post videos of pretty much any length. A guy on the Leet World forum posted a 40 minute video, so I thought I’d get in on the act and digitize the footage I have of Knifepoint, which I haven’t watched in years.

I ended up having to re-digitize the video into iMovie, and it took forever to convert the 43 minute video into a format that Google can use, but here it is:

You need to have flashplayer enabled to watch this Google video

This performance is from 2003, and is the final dress rehearsal, so there’s no audience other than the techs, who occasionally walk in front of the camera. The show was directed by Andrew Richey, and stars Barrett Michael, Lauren McCauley, and Liam Boyer. I haven’t talked to most of those people in years…

I think most people I know managed to come see the show when it was performed, but there may be a few of you out there who didn’t get the chance, so it’s nice to have this available in an online format. I think I may do the same thing with some of the other videos I’ve got lying around…

The Leet World, or “When Talking About Making Something Turns Into Actually Doing It”

I’m not sure why I didn’t post about this before, considering I spent almost the entire weekend working on the website, but some friends of mine that go way back – Eddy, Nick, and Daniel, to be exact – recently starting working on putting into motion an idea that had been percolating for years.

There has always been talk in our circle of friends about making movies, but one idea in particular stuck around for a long time. The premise was simple: make an ongoing series of short films/episodes about a bunch of characters from a video game (Counter-Strike) who are placed in a Real World-style house and see what happens.

The premise is possible because of a phenomenon called machinima, which means using the graphics/animation from video games to render animated short films. The most popular and well-known example of this phenomenon is a show called Red vs. Blue.

In any case, Smooth Few Films, as they are collectively known, actually got to the point where they could produce a trailer and then a full-fledged episode of the show. Check it out:

Trailer (kind of illicit because of the music… shhh! Hopefully they’ll have time to redo it at some point…):

Episode #1 (all original music!):

There is already a lively forum on the site, and plenty of random people from all over the world have left feedback. It’s pretty exciting to see my friends succeeding like this, although this is still only the initial level. They are planning on doing a new episode every 2-3 weeks, and I think this show’s popularity will only grow with more episodes and an ever-growing forum community.

you’d think with a fancy college education like mine, these sort of things would occur to me sooner

So… you may remember the story of my camcorder. I bought it in the summer of 2003. I paid it off in November of 2004. Three months later, I pulled it out of its case and discovered that the screen had decided that from then on out it would display and record nothing but blackness. Audio came through just fine, tapes played without a hitch, but recording anything new was impossible.

This discovery was, at the time, incredibly frustrating. I had barely used the camcorder, hardly justified the $1000 purchase.

The camera has mostly been a frustrating experience – when I did use it to record anything, it became apparent (I thought) that my old iMac was no longer up to the task of editing. Of course, the resolution to _that_ bit of the story was that it was actually my firewire drive gumming up the works. This meant that although I could edit video, there couldn’t be much of it because of the limited space on my main drive.

When it finally broke, however, that was the last straw. At the time, I contacted Canon customer service to see if they could do any kind of repair. I got the impression, however, that fixing the problem would could about half as much as the camera was worth, and that hardly seemed worth it considering how little I had used it in the first place. I decided to wait until I had some spare cash to worry about fixing it. It didn’t really seem like a priority.

Flash forward to a year later. The camera has been sitting in a drawer, unused and forgotten about. One big change, though, is that I bought myself a brand new computer, one with more than enough to horsepower to edit video. Enough horsepower to edit video without even batting an eye. The first big step had been taken. Now I just had to look into getting it repaired.

This is where one begins to wonder _why I did not think of the following solution a year ago…_

We’ve had some discussions among my group of friends recently about putting together a kind of variety show, with theatre, poetry, music, film, and whatever else anyone can come up with. Thanks to a recent discussion, it finally occurred to me that I should look into getting the camera repaired somewhere else besides Canon.

“Hell,” I thought, “why not check and see if Best Buy could repair it? It’d probably be cheaper that Canon repairing it.”

It occurred to me after some thought that I should probably dig up my receipt to find out whether or not the camera might still be under warranty. This was no small task, considering that my “filing system” consists of five years of random papers stacked on my dining room table, oftentimes topped off by a surly black cat.

At first it was pretty hopeless, but as I was on hold with Best Buy, I started flailing around in the pile to see if I could just find an old Best Buy credit card statement, when what should I find but _the original receipt_!

It gets better from there, however… it turns out that way back in the day I was thoughtful enough to buy the Best Buy service plan, which (much to my surprise) covers my camera for four years. This means that I can get repairs done on the camera… *for free* until 6/6/2007.

Needless to say, I felt pretty silly and pretty happy at the same time. Earlier tonight I dropped the camera off for repairs. I should have it back sometime in a week or so.

And then all I have to do is start making movies again.

Razza-frazza @#$% Macworld Keynote

Stupid “new iMacs”:http://www.apple.com with stupid Intel processors and stupid “all sales final” employee purchase plan…

…actually, I kid… I am kind of disappointed that they did in fact update the iMacs after all. I was banking on them updating the Mac Mini and probably one of the laptop lines, but I really thought that since the iMac was updated in November that it wouldn’t be updated so soon. Oh well.

My computer is still absolutely awesome and incredibly powerful, and will continue to have the same life that it would always have had. I knew they were going to start introducing Macs with Intel processors sometime this year, and I knew that and went ahead and bought a new computer anyways because I wanted a _new computer_.

I’ve heard it said that buying the first revision of anything is oftentimes a bad idea anyways…

Ah well. Let’s be realistic here. For what I’m going to do with my computer (surf the web, write, listen to music, watch movies, design web pages, maybe edit some video, play with Garageband, etc) I’ve got more than enough iMac to go around. Hell, my old iMac only recently stopped being able to do some of those things.

farscape –> wazoo

well, thank god for hollywood video and the fact that season two of farscape comes in two disc sets. it’s been much less frustrating to work my way through this season because of it. sure, i’ve spent a hunk of change on rentals when – if i was patient – i could always get them from netflix, but if i had chosen that path, i wouldn’t have been able to watch nine (count ’em) nine episodes today.

and boy, were they some good episodes! the first season was good, good enough to hook me on the show, but there were definitely some crappy episodes here and there, points at which i got annoyed and was really only watching them so i wouldn’t miss anything. season two, on the other hand, is not only more consistent, but certain episodes rise above the rest. my favorite episode so far is one called “won’t get fooled again”, where crichton seems to have traveled back to earth… except everyone from moya is there, and they don’t seem to know what he’s talking about. nothing cracked me up quite as much as pilot playing the bongos…

i keep going to the “episode guide on tvtome”:http://www.tvtome.com/Farscape/ and accidentally reading little spoilers. you’d think i’d have learned by now, but i’m the bug and it’s a flame. i just have to learn more about the episodes i’ve watched so far. (p.s. if you go to that page, be careful when you click on the episode guide. it goes straight to a summary of the peacekeeper wars miniseries. i couldn’t help myself, and i read just a bit of it, more than i should have…)

i suppose i should have gone outside and taken a walk at some point today – it was really nice outside – but once i got into the farscape, there was no stopping me. really, it was all i wanted to do today. and somehow i feel accomplished. nine episodes. damn. it doesn’t feel like i spent close to seven hours of the day watching farscape…

well, fuck.

so… remember how i was all excited that i can edit video on my computer now? well, today i turned on my camcorder – i occasionally use it to take still photos – and got nothing but a black screen in the viewfinder and lcd. i fiddled with it, tried different batteries, the power cord, whatever i could think of, and then i looked it up on the internet.

turns out that canon zr-series camcorders, especially ones about as old as mine, tend to have CCD failures. as in my specific problem. apparently this can be fixed… for around $170 or so.

for which price i could just buy a nice new digital still camera and make stop-motion movies.

i’m starting to feel like – two years later – buying this camcorder (which i only just paid off in November of 2004) was one of the stupidest things i’ve ever done.

tomorrow: working stiff

this is the most i’ve ever prepared for a job. it is, of course, only my second “real” job, if we’re counting the _rollercoaster ride of fun_ that was Nacq (and i am), and for that job i didn’t get nearly this worked up.

i mean, i went clothes shopping today and bought a new dress shirt so that i’ll look nice on my first day. of course, i did need a new dress shirt because the two i had don’t fit around the neck anymore, but it’s not like i have to wear a dress shirt every day at work – i only have to wear business casual tomorrow.

and yet, i went out and bought a shirt and tie combo at ross ($20), as well as some new black socks ($7) and then i had to go to walmart and buy an ironing board ($17) so i could iron my damn shirt after i washed it. (of course, i think i’m going to return the ironing board, because i don’t foresee needing it very much unless i have to start wearing nice shirts five days a week.)

tonight on my way back from walmart, i drove to work so i wouldn’t get lost in the morning. i’m going to be working in a genuine business complex. this is, in fact, a *real job*. hell, i’ll probably even have to deal with morning traffic. (fun…)

however, it occurs to me that now it is even more imperative than before that i get my creative juices a-flowing (especially since i can edit video with impunity now). it would be too easy to let myself sink into a regular daily routine at my job, and if i end up liking the work, it’ll be even easier. i need to think of this job as a way to pay my bills and debt and hopefully save up some money so that when the chance comes for me to pursue something creative, or perhaps go off to graduate school, i can do so.

speaking of graduate school, i have a feeling that around (or before) the time i’m 25, that’ll be someplace i want to go. if i’m going to continue my schooling, i think i want to finish it up before i’m 30…

money…

well, my new job starts this upcoming monday, and i think that my first paycheck will follow on friday (that’s what’s nice about working through a temp agency… _weekly paychecks!_)

i’m trying to not let the idea of having money again go to my head, but i have to admit that i’m already plotting some possible purchases.

first of all, i lost an important part of my “shitty tripod”:http://www.ambicoproducts.com, and the company that made it has apparently been bought off and folded into some huge electronics company. not surprising. unfortunately, this means that my chances of getting a “replacement foot” for my tripod (as in, the piece that screws onto a camera and then snaps into the top of the tripod) are infinitesimal.

not having a working tripod makes it basically impossible for me to make another “stop-motion movie”:http://portfolio.unsquare.com/film/donkey/, which i’ve been itching to do lately. and then i realized that if i was going to buy a tripod, why not do whatever i can to make it easier to film new stop motion video?

the most annoying limitation i had when making the donkey movie was that i could only take 24 frames of anything and then i had to unplug my camcorder and import the stills using iphoto. this meant i had very little room for error. the main reason i was so limited, however, was because of the 8mb flash memory card used to store still photos – trying to use DV tapes to store “stills” is an absurdity.

turns out, however, that you can now buy 128mb flash memory cards for $20. and a usb card reader for $10. so that’s three things that would make stop-motion a bit easier. of course, then i’d actually have to follow through and make something or it’d just be more money down a hole.

i seem to have this problem, see, where instead of making do with what i’ve got and creating something, i always tell myself that i need something newer and better to get the job done. so, first i bought a camcorder. then i bought a 120 gig firewire hard drive to store raw footage. -now i need a new computer because mine can no longer play back raw video clips without lagging desperately (except it did just fine when i edited “dancing with myself” or the lost “hepatitis pie” movie that crashed my computer.) it’s frustrating because in the meantime, instead of writing something now that i could shoot later, i spend my time on other things.- right. read the newer entry…

i have a strange relationship with writing. right now i can’t get myself to read anything i wrote in the past, even when i know it’s perfectly good. i don’t want to re-read living in concussion, or look at the fragments i’ve written for daniel, or anything else. something inside me just finds so much of that embarassing, and yet, another part of me knows that there’s nothing wrong with what i’ve written. nothing at all.

i’ve been trying to talk myself into starting something new. the attempts at convincing myself are becoming more numerous, and something has to break through soon. i swear it. i’ve _thought_ about trying to write more lately than i have in a long time, which, considering how things have been going, is quite a change. there was a long stretch there where i blithely went along not worrying about it at all.

formattin’ the drive

today, on a whim, i decided to reinstall OS X, but with a complete reformat of my hard drive, in the hopes that it would possibly speed things up because it wouldn’t have any of the random shit i’ve installed on it.

i’ve been working on re-installing important programs as they occur to me, but the only difference i can tell for sure is that the main hard drive has 10 gigs free now instead of 4.5, so that’s an improvement, at least. imovie hd still plays video like molasses, unfortunately.

god. i have to work tomorrow. dammit.

real quick

eddy was saying that he wished there was a higher quality version of “dancing with myself” and it got me to thinking… i knew i had backed them up somewhere…

after about a minute of searching, i found the backups cd, and after messing with the files for a bit, i got the old imovie project converted into an imovie hd project. unfortunately, the original mp3 soundtrack had been corrupted somewhere along the way, so i had to redo that, which wasn’t easy considering how laggy the video was.

luckily, though, i finally managed to get them synced up, and then i exported a newer version of the movie, higher quality and all.

check it out: dancing with myself (10mb file)

*EDIT:* okay, doug, i fixed the glitch. remember, i exported the original right before going to bed. these things happen. jerk.

i am totally that guy

i just realized that i’m turning into a hermit. with multiple cats. before you know it, i’ll have a whole herd of them constantly mewling and pissing on everything and i’ll have stoppped leaving my house except to pick up the newest tv guide and yell at those darn neighbor kids always throwing shit on my roof.

…the only time i left my house today was around 11:30 at night for an ill-fated trip to the local video rental store. i say ill-fated because the main purpose was to rent something funny, hopefully either anchorman or napoleon dynamite, but – of course – both were rented, because they’re very popular, these funny movies, and everyone else had already had the same idea as me.

it didn’t help that i owe the i luv video on airport… mmm… let’s say five dollars – quite an expense since i’m trying to save money and all – and the one on guadalupe… which seemed so promising at first… had a broken credit card machine. and i never have cash. well, i never have money, especially not now, but i super-especially never have cash. i almost half-heartedly rented some anime at the airport i luv video, but then i realized that i didn’t really want to watch it, and i didn’t really want to pay my late fees either.

and besides, last night i bought garden state with a target gift card i got in a sort of late christmas extravaganza. all ten dollars worth. i was hoping garden state would be even cheaper, but when i had to ask the guy to find me the only copy in the store, i had basically decided to bite the bullet and buy the damn thing no matter how much it cost. ($20 plus tax, if you must know, which came out to $11.64 after the gift card was applied. still as cheap or cheaper than i could have gotten it online.)

so i came back home, made a pot of coffee (at 12:45 in the morning, no less!), and sat down to watch the movie that so many of you have written off because it’s too popular with the hip kids, or sounds too cliche, or whatever other reasons you might imagine. course, i’ve already told you that this brand of stance on movies annoys me, most likely because there’s nothing i can do to make all those hipster douchebags stop raving about nice movies that you would like if they weren’t so overhyped.

BEGIN IMPROMPTU *GARDEN STATE* REVIEW

the movie still stands up on a second viewing, and the parts that made me laugh the first time are still just as funny. the ending doesn’t seem like such a cop-out after all. and the real strength of the movie is revealed: while the main thrust of the movie is about andrew largeman’s personal journey of growth, it’s probably one of the least pretentious versions of such a story i can remember. this is mostly because of instead of making the movie some sort of drawing-room talking heads bullshit piece, the movie is peopled with strikingly odd characters that were surely drawn directly from life, and the occasional moments of surrealism that somehow – when put all together – make new jersey into a place both bleak and magical at the same time.

i think every writer has an urge when first starting out to write something nakedly autobiographical and confessional, and this generally turns into something maudlin and annoying. the thing is, while that element was obviously the genesis of this movie, we are not hit over the head with endless dramatic scenes where braff’s character goes through emotional torment and Learns Something Important. instead, the movie is muted and subtle compared to other such filmic confessionals, and filled with genuinely funny and strange moments that truly set it apart.

garden state is definitely a first film, and perhaps it only exists because of zach braff’s role on scrubs, but the nice thing about it is that – although it does have its flaws – the moments that stand out are of the sort that i personally love seeing in movies, and i can only imagine that, given time, some maturity as a writer, and another crack behind the camera, braff will come up with something wholly original.

SO THERE’S *THAT*

why do i have the urge to drink another pot of coffee? it’s 4:49 in the morning!

all i know is that if there was some way i could never have to sleep again – without any side effects – i would go for it. my worst and most dangerous vice is my love of sleep. it’s much easier, when given the choice between sitting down and writing something, or reading a book, or finding a job, or really doing anything that might help me put my goddamn life on track, to just nod off for four or five hours, or sleep until three in the afternoon, or generally wander through my life with eyes closed and brain stuffed with cotton.

i can feel my brain atrophying in my skull. i’ve begun forgetting names i should know, telling the same stories over and over again, and re-reading sentences in novels over and over again because i wasn’t paying attention the first time around.

when i talk on the phone with my mother, she says things like “well, i hope that you can find a job that would actually make those four years of college mean something.”

meaning would be nice, but i honestly don’t think that there’s any connection between the time i spent in college – learning about life through both university sponsored and illicit channels – and the job(s) i’m inevitably going to have to take because i have about $30 in my checking account and $1100 charged on my credit card. sure, it’d be nice to be able to find a job that i could only get because i have a college degree, but honestly… i had one of those, and it made me want to gouge my own eyes out.

there are three sorts of jobs out there that seem to stem logically from my time in college. they are as follows:

(1) jobs that require warm bodies with motor and language skills (but little or no experience) to perform menial tasks considered too complicated for those without a degree

(2) jobs in more interesting specializations that, as a result, require either more experience than i have or a good bit of nepotism in hiring practices.

(3) creative jobs that wouldn’t actually have required either a college degree or even high school equivalency, just the preserverence and talent necessary to catch the eye of someone important. oh and it helps to have a portfolio/experience to prove your talent when necessary.

NACQ was a #1 sort of job. we can rule those out if they involve computers. i want my computer to be a thing of joy and relaxation, not some punishing box full of cathodes that drains my lifeforce away minute by minute.

i suppose i could do something dull and mindless if i at least got to walk around a bit and occasionally talk to some people. ironically, a lot of dull and mindless jobs tend to require experience i don’t have… unless they’re in the fast food industry, which my mother tells me just doesn’t fit into the whole life-plan thing she seems to have mapped out in her mind.

alright. i think i might be tired now.

goddamnit!

i finally sat down to watch casino, and when it gets within a half hour of the end of the whole fucking movie, the dvd decides that it is going to begin skipping like no other, rendering not just moments of film unplayable, but a whole fucking chapter, and there’s nothing i can do to get the goddamn thing to play!

dammit, i just want to know what happens!

now i’m going to have to go to i luv video tomorrow and try and convince them to let me trade it out for the video version, or something, just so i can finish the fucking movie.

gah!

*edit*: luckily, when i went in today, the late fee was only a dollar and they were still nice enough to let me get a credit and have another copy of the movie – vhs this time, just to be safe. it was kind of funny, cause i really only had 20 min left in the movie, so i brought the tape back in less than an hour.

Unemployment Sucks: Electric Boogaloo

just finished browsing the job listings. e-mailed one listing on craigslist.org for some guy who needs “3 hours of video edited down to 1/2 hour”. whatever.

there was a listing in the statesman that sounded kind of interesting – a casting company looking for extras, promising “up to $18 an hour”, so i called their 1-800 number, was put on hold for five minutes, and then some slimy jackass came on the line and explained to me that I could make “up to $400 a day, and we’ve got jobs right now”, but for “non-union members, there’s a one-time fee of $139, refundable in 30 days if you don’t like the jobs…” at which point i got tired of his bullshit and said “uh… yeah. i’m gonna have to call back later.” right.

stupid unemployment.

Unemployment Sucks

Well, today was my first day of official joblessness. I considered the weekend part of the Thanksgiving holiday, so today was the first day I felt like I should actually be doing something. Accordingly, I woke up at 9am (unintentionally), watched six episodes of Arrested Development, brainstormed some stuff to write, and then visited the Hollywood Video on 41st and Red River.

This Hollywood Video is special – or so claimed the coupon mailer I got – because they’ve got more than 50,000 movies in that one store, the largest film library in Texas (i think that was the claim). I wasn’t sure what to expect, really. I mean, I Luv Video has a hell of a lot of movies, and if you want something weird, foreign, or pornographic, they’re definitely the place to go, but this newly enlarged Hollywood Video managed to trump them by having the most complete collection of Criterion Collection DVDs I have ever seen – maybe close to 200.

You know how most video rental places have the movies turned facing out of the shelf? The bulk of the DVDs in this store were turned so that the spine was sticking out, and there was barely a centimeter of free space on any shelf. And these were shelves taller than my head, mind you. I think each row of shelves probably had as many movies on it as a normal Hollywood Video would have in a whole store. I had to leave before I hyperventilated.

I did, however, rent 8 1/2 and The Lower Depths before i left.

i have made my first test film

i have made my first test film with my camcorder and imovie. (probably requires quicktime 6.3)

i quickly discovered that imovie is more annoying that i remembered it being. also, all of the video captured was waaaay too dark, partly because i live in a very murky, dark place.

also, my hard drive is much too full for video editing. i’ll clean it off tomorrow, but i’m going to have to buy that external hard drive pretty soon. from what i can tell, 1 minute ~ half a gigabyte. fun.

anyways, this is video of my cat, jackson. he’s the black one. the other kitty cat is appollonia, jackson’s girlfriend.

i had a dream last

i had a dream last night. in my dream, i and several of the people here for the semester decided we were going to go back to america for a little visit. the first thing we found out when we got back on campus was that the theatre department was doing the cherry orchard – which we did last year – only the cast was filled with new theatre majors i didn’t know. when we were trying to get into the theatre, the guy who was taking tickets stopped us and wouldn’t let us in. i just remember thinking that he should know who we were, but he didn’t.

another part of the dream was greg shotwell complaining because he hadn’t “seen any titties yet.”

i also had one more dream before this one in which i thought i had become a part of the movie castaway, except the plot was completely different, and had something to do with a family of five. i think the connection was that the father was played benevolently by tom hanks. most of that dream has disappeared except for one image where something is wrong with one of the children and tom is putting his hand on her head for comfort.

actually, these stories about my dream are slightly falsified, because i’ve made up logical stories to explain the illogical images that stuck in my memory. i’m not sure what my dreams were exactly, but they were something like the above.

/////////////////////////////////////////////

today we went to westminster abbey, which was basicallly this huge, gorgeous church that also happened to be a tomb for a very large number of people, including darwin and isaac newton as well as a huge number of kings and queens. all of the tombs were decorated with extremely flattering sculptures, some of which were very bad. a few of the sculptures had subjects placed in extremely uncomfortable looking positions, or (even better) ones that equated the dead with either ceaser or god, according to which way you looked at them.

i wandered around in there for around an hour and a half while talking to this girl, erin (6’2″, red hair). somewhere along the line we decided to leave there around 10:30, and we ended up wandering around a little before eating some lunch, and then we went and saw a movie.

the movie was called “heaven” and it’s actually the new movie from the guy that made “run lola run”. it was kind of interesting because it starred an american and an australian and was mostly in italian (and english). and was directed by a german.

ribisi spoke italian pretty convincingly, which leads me to believe he maybe grew up speaking it in his family, or just had a very good tutor.

i can’t really describe the plot of the movie, except that its verrry different from run lola run. very slow, methodical and symbolic. (not that lola wasn’t symbolic).

it doesn’t come out in america until october something, and probably won’t leave new york. so… watch it on video.

i’m happy because “frailty” is coming out here soon. i wanted to see it but never got the chance to while it was out in the states. i’m secretly hoping that “salton sea” will come out while i’m here, but that might be unlikely.

the movie i’m especially looking forward to seeing is “lost in la mancha,” the documentary about the terry gilliam movie that was never made.

well, it’s getting close to five and i think i might get kicked out of here soon, so i’m signing off. keep signing the comments, please. it fills my heart full of gravy.

…right…

P.S. it’s 4:45 while i’m writing this, which means it’s 10:45 where you are.