Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Hoodrats and Pretentious Posers.

I'm a nice person, really, but sometimes people might not get that from the angry posts on here. Yes, I rant and get angry about things, but it's only because I know how to call people on their bullshit.

I have some bullshit to discuss today.

The other day I was browsing some blogs on the Internet, and one post had a photo of some actor from the Harry Potter movies in hip hop regalia. This boy had on a pimped out collar, lots of jewelry, etc.

A commenter to this picture said: "Hahahaha hoodrat![name]!"

Things like this raise my blood pressure. A person should never bring the slang unless they know how to use it. Especially don't try and use hip hop slang if you're clueless, because it's insulting to the entire culture and obvious that you are a poser.

This person clearly had no understanding of hip hop culture. And how do I know that?

Because "hoodrat" ONLY REFERS TO WOMEN.

A definition of "hoodrat" is "Female, generally sexually promiscuous, and not upwardly mobile."


Little boys playing dress up in hip hop clothing also annoy me. Especially spoiled, rich, little white boys. I have seen other actors from those Harry Potter movies go around thinking they're Eminem (read: Tom Felton, who can't act, by the way), and it's irritating. These boys have no concept of the hip hop culture, and they can like the music, fine, I do, too, but don't try and pretend that you are hip hop or that you have any understanding of where these people come from. You don't. You're just a little poser trying to shake up your pampered little life. These people are from the streets; you're from suburbia, or something like it.

I hate posers in general, though. I hate when people pretend to be something they're not. There's another reason why I shouldn't read blogs unless I'm in the mood to get angry.

I hate, hate, hate when I see people online I know to be American use British spellings (i.e., "colour," "favourite," etc.) Ugh. That is one of my biggest pet peeves ever. They're clearly trying to be "cool" and "hip." They aren't. They're just embarrassing themselves and revealing themselves to be the fake, pretentious posers they are. And then I just laugh hysterically when they try to explain it with something like "Well, I write stories that take place in England, so the spellings have became automatic." I call bullshit. Do you spell words like that at work or school? I DIDN'T THINK SO. So get a life. If I ever become a teacher, it will be my policy that any sort of pretentious shit like that will result in an automatic zero. Booyah.

Speaking of careers, I'd probably fire most of the people I know online if they ever worked for me. Way too many people get on the Internet during business hours and post things like "I should be working..." Whoa. The business minor in me is SHRIEKING at the loss of productivity. You get paid to work, people, not go online and read mediocre porn or play Soduko (although, I encourage you to play it any other time).

I'm out, kids.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Arctic Monkeys = Overrated.

What is the big effing deal with this band Arctic Monkeys? First of all, I hate people declaring crap like "highest-grossing film" or "fastest-selling album" because those figures are bullshit. They (most of them) don't figure in inflation or population numbers or etc. Of course a popular movie today is going to make more money than a popular movie 50 years ago! Idiots. It's called economics.

Anyway. I read that this band's new album "is already called the best British album of all time."

I call bullshit. Even if they are good, that statement is way premature and whoever is saying it must have low standards. The best? Not hardly.

Anyway, I listened to some of their songs and at first I was not that impressed. The lead singer's voice made me want to bash my effing head against the wall so I would pass out and not have to listen anymore. And don't give me some bullshit that I must not like rock or British bands, because I like plenty of both.

However, to my horror, his voice grew on me to the point where I did enjoy some of the songs. I would listen to them again, but only on their myspace account. I wouldn't buy the album.

Nevertheless there's a lot of hype over a band that ain't that great. I wouldn't call their style innovative or ground-breaking. It sounds like good, but recycled, '70's music. In three years, no one will remember who this overrated, fad band is. Their type of music doesn't last. So there.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

The 3rd Annual Standing Rock International Short Film and Video Festival.

Last night I was bored and no one was returning my phone calls, so I worked up the nerve to attend The 3rd Annual Standing Rock International Short Film and Video Festival (I'm a bit of a homebody). I'm glad I went because trying new things = good, but I'm not sure that I actually enjoyed the films. I enjoyed the experience of going to a film festival because I always wanted to go to one, but most of the films had me thinking "What the hell is this?" I liked the comedy ones more than the so-called "thought-provoking" ones. Films go by so fast (esp. these, which were short films, one was 30 seconds! Actually, that one made more sense than the longer ones...) that a person can't always think or grasp a "deeper" meaning from them, esp. these films which were mostly collages of images. I think the only person who comes away with any meaning from these films is mostly only the creators themselves, because they are the ones who understand their thought processes. The film festival was full of work from people all over the world, from Kent to Cleveland to Australia to Russia to more.

I liked the films by Darcy Prendergast, an award-winning filmmaker from Australia. He had two in the festival: "Repugnant," a 2 min. film with 2-dimensional animation and "Off the Rails," a 6 min. claymation. These two films really made me laugh because they were so absurd. "Off the Rails" is "about all the crazy people met and observed on public transport," and the spot that had me cracking up most was on Gary the Gravedigger, who talks about how he likes the social part of his work and then walks up to a sobbing man standing over a grave and says "I buried your wife." You can watch "Off the Rails" here.

I also v. much enjoyed "Veruca Meets Bush" by Vince Packard, which is described in the program as a "mediation on childish greed that merges Veruca from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with our Commander and Chief." Veruca Salt, of course, is the child who sings "I want the world / I want the whole world / I want to lock it all up in my pocket." Now imagine a film intermingling that song, Bush's speeches, and Pantera music. Yeah. I'll admit, I liked the concept of this film much more than the execution.

That was my problem with a lot of the films. After reading the program, I looked forward to watching "Soliloquy" by Shannon Moore, which is described as "This awesome 16mm film explores issues of body image and identity with haunting, intimate images. Shannon describes the film as 'An expression of feeling trapped inside an illusion and the desire to escape from hiding behind the false impressions that have provided a sense of security.'" I don't think the film actually expressed that to the audience. To her, yes. Again, short films are such an intimate experience for the creator that I feel it's hard for outsiders to come away with what the creator intended.

Other films made me want to cry in horror. "Blood and Sunflowers" by Christiane Cegavske was esp. creepy. It is described as a "nightmarish stop-action animation piece explores a Freudian world of birds, dolls, and death." You can watch it here. *Shudder.*

Other films had me wondering why people would even consider them good enough to be put in a festival, such as "Movement is Life" by Franklin Miller, which has no point except, I'm sure, to the filmmaker. It's just this statue-like figure walking around and talking nonsense about meeting some guy who says he owes him money. That's all it is.

Robert Banks was the featured artist. He is a celebrated experimental filmmaker from Cleveland, who is prob. best known for his film "X: The Baby Cinema," which chronicles "the commercial appropriation of the image of Malcolm X" by Spike Lee. You can watch some of his other films here.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

The Cleveland Indians.

Dear Cleveland Indians,

WHAT THE EFFING EFF IS YOUR PROBLEM?!? This trade is bullshit. BULLSHIT. I HATE YOU, you CHEAP motherfuckers. I don't even call this bullshit a trade. I don't even know who those players you got ARE. I see you got $1 million, though. Yes, that sounds about right. You like to get money but you don't like to SPEND it. You'd rather have money than GOOD PLAYERS and CHAMPIONSHIPS. You do not deserve to win any games. Coco Crisp was an excellent player--and fans loved him! Every time you get good players, YOU TRADE THEM AWAY SO THEY CAN BECOME SUPERSTARS SOMEWHERE ELSE. Manny Ramirez, anyone? YOU SUCK. Why do Cleveland teams suck? The Browns do it, too. They traded four defensive linemen to Denver where they went on to the PLAYOFFS. I think you all get together and think of ways to SCREW THE FANS. You are STUPID and HATEFUL. I'm so DISGUSTED. I hope you miss the playoffs by a GAME again this year, and see if I come to any of your shit ass games.

No love,


Friday, January 27, 2006

Brokeback Mountain Soundtrack and Rufus Wainwright.

I got the soundtrack to Brokeback Mountain. Wee! It's v. good.

Here's the list of songs:

1. "Opening"--Gustavo Santaolalla
2. "He Was a Friend of Mine"--Willie Nelson
3. "Brokeback Mountain 1"--Gustavo Santaolalla
4. "A Love That Will Never Grow Old"--Emmylou Harris
5. "King of the Road"--Rufus Wainwright
6. "Snow"--Gustavo Santaolalla
7. "The Devil's Right Hand"--Steve Earle
8. "No One's Gonna Love You Like Me"--Mary McBride
9. "Brokeback Mountain 2"--Gustavo Santaolalla
10. "I Don't Want to Say Goodbye"--Teddy Thompson
11. "I Will Never Let You Go"--Jackie Greene
12. "Riding Horses"--Gustavo Santaolalla
13. "An Angel Went Up In Flames"--The Gas Band
14. "It's So Easy"--Linda Ronstadt
15. "Brokeback Mountain 3"--Gustavo Santaolalla
16. "The Maker Makes"--Rufus Wainwright
17. "The Wings"--Gustavo Santaolalla

One thing. I hate Rufus Wainwright....Of all of the versions of "King of the Road," why did they have to go with Mr. Mumble-Mumble-Can't-Understand-What-the-Eff-I'm-Saying-Excuse-Me-While-I-Butcher-a-Classic's version? I guess his mumbling = "artsy," though, so to be "hip," you have to like him. Whatever. Give me Willie Nelson and Steve Earle any day.

Quick! Top Five Worst Films Ever!

I'm so bored.

Quick! Top Five Worst Films Ever!

In no order...

The Brothers Grimm
Punch-Drunk Love
The Blair Witch Project
Love Actually (YEAH, THAT'S RIGHT!)

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Brokeback Mountain (major spoilers).

If there was one thing that bothered me about Brokeback Mountain, it was that in the short story, the way Jack died is supposed to be ambiguous. Ennis immediately thinks Jack was murdered as his listens to Lureen's explanation because of his own fears and etc., but later he sometimes feels conflicted over which is the "true" version and sometimes he feels he knows what happened. But he can't ever know for sure--because he wasn't with Jack. And each version has it's own unique reasons for being a tragedy.

E. Annie Proulx wanted that ambiguity in her story, so everyone could come away from the story with their own idea about what happened to Jack based on our own experiences *and* for reasons having to do with Ennis, but I'm not writing an essay on the topic so I'm not getting into them. (This post is just an unstructured, rambling rant.)

However, in the movie, Ang Lee (and Anne Hathaway, at that) clearly tried to promote one version over the other. And I don't like that. I don't need someone to interpret the work for me. And I especially don't need someone ruining a crucial part of the story, because I think it's very important that the ending remain ambiguous. I think you can still walk away from the movie thinking it's ambiguous, but it's harder. Especially if you've never read the story.

While watching the movie, some people might not realize that the clip of Jack being murdered is all in Ennis's mind. It's important to know that. But Ang Lee, I feel, in that scene, with how he did the clip and with Hathaway's acting, clearly wanted the audience to feel that Jack was undoubtedly murdered. (And here we have a clear difference of opinion between Lee and Hathaway vs. the screenwriters *and* Proulx.) I hate Lee a little bit for this. I've read that Lee wanted to film it even more heavy-handedly, but, thankfully, he controlled himself.

But the fact that the clip was all in Ennis's mind doesn't mean that Jack wasn't murdered. It just means that Ennis is not psychic and could summon up a vision of how Jack died. So it's not supposed to mean that the accidental death couldn't have happened, either. It just means that the death is supposed to be ambiguous. Ennis will never know and the audience will never know, and we have to walk away with our own interpretation, not the director's. That's the problem with your favorite pieces of literature being turned into movies: you have to see them colored through someone else's eyes.

Do I have a version that I subscribe to more? Yes. Do I know that it's the "true" one? No. You can walk away from the film firmly believing your own interpretation, but you can't tell someone else theirs is wrong.

Actually, I'm not sure I believe one version more than the other. Until lately I did, yes. Someone told me that Proulx said something along the lines of "on his good days, Ennis thinks it's the tire rim. On his bad days, he thinks it's the tire iron." The person didn't supply a link to this interview, so I'm not sure Proulx really said this. But it's what I feel about the story, anyway.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Gone with the Wind: Don't Mess with a Good Thing.

...I was looking at the Gone with the Wind's message boards on imdb.com , and there was a post dealing with "If GwtW were remade, who should be in the cast?"

I shouldn't have read it.

I already realized that the people there were mainly morons. They liked to get in "debates" about whether or not Rhett and Scarlett eventually reunite.

There is no debate. Of course they do. If you think otherwise, then you have completely misunderstood the characters and missed the point of the closing lines.

But I did read it. First of all, if there were ever a remake of GwtW...the world must have turned on its head. There is no reason to remake the most perfect film ever.

The story was perfect, the setting was perfect, but most of all, the casting was perfect. No one could ever replace Clark Cable or Vivien Leigh. It's not even worth discussing, because never will you find anyone suitable.

But those crazy kids did discuss it.

And one person seriously suggested the following:

"rhett: orlando bloom
scarlett: mischa barton or anne hathaway
melanie: amanda bynes or anne hathaway"

I want to cry at the hideousness of it.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Se7en, etc.

Interesting. I express my dislike for Gwynnie Paltrow, and the next day, the movie where she gets her head cut off (Se7en) shows on TV. Someone likes me (and agrees with me).

Se7en is a cool movie, but I'm not sure if I can stomach Brad Pitt's "acting" at the moment.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Hate on Gwynnie Paltrow?

ARGH! Save me from listening to Madonna! She and Gwynnie Paltrow can both take their pretentious, fake British accent and go eff themselves. NO ONE IS AMUSED/IMPRESSED. And DON'T get me started on Madonna making a mockery out of Judaism/Kabbalah.

"Celebrities" are so lame.

ETA: I swear to God, if I ever run into Paltrow, I will spit in her frickin face...okay, I wouldn't want to be roughed up by security so I actually wouldn't do it, BUT I WOULD SERIOUSLY CONSIDER IT.

Pretentious Gwynnie Opens Her Mouth About Politics and Thinks We Care

ETA: That's it.

"I find the English amazing how they got over 7/7. There were no multiple memorials with people sobbing as they would have been in America. There, they are constantly scaring people but at the same time, people think nothing of going to see a therapist." --Gwynnie Paltrow

That's one of the most insensitive things I have ever read in my life. She is just an empty-headed Barbie doll running around playing dress up because HEAVEN FORBID THAT PEOPLE BE ALLOWED TO MOURN. Apparently she is the only one allowed to mourn, though, because we all know she was sobbing all over the place when her father died.

Why are celebrities allowed to talk? They should just act and shut up, because being famous does not somehow make you smarter. If she weren't an actress and were instead an ordinary citizen, no one could give a fuck about what she has to say about anything and no one would take her insane ramblings seriously.

I love how she acts like she has any concept of the world when in reality she's not American or British, she's just a spoiled little rich bitch who has had a pampered life and who has never had to work for ANYTHING in her life and who only got breaks as an actress because of who her parents and "uncle" were. Stop acting like you know anything about anything, Gwynnie, because you live in a dream land.

I never knew I had so much hate for Paltrow. But come on. She is the most superficial of the superficial.

Also, if Gwynnie is so concerned about the environment, WHY DOES SHE DRIVE A BMW SUV? HYPOCRITE.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Constant Gardner / Ben Stein.

Uh, wow. We watched The Constant Gardner last night. I loved it. It wasn't really what I expected. It's advertised as a suspense-thriller, and while it delivers on that, I think they should just come out and promote the movie for what it really is, and that's a love story. (Okay, I see that the tagline for the movie actually is "Love. At any cost." but not once in any preview commercial did I see any mention of a love story...actually, I don't think the previews really show what the movie is about at all.)

I want the soundtrack to the movie.

Ben Stein was on television last night complaining about how hard it is to be a Republican in Hollywood. Yeah, you read that right. Excuse me while I go laugh my ass off.

A white male having a hard time of things? Hahahahahaha. I didn't know Stein was such a comedian. He should try being a black female in Hollywood. Or an old female. Or better yet, a fat female. Then he can come and complain about things being hard, boo hoo.

Stein doesn't have a hard time in Hollywood because he's a Republican. When you audition for a role, no one asks you whether or not you're a Democrat or Republican. He has a hard time because he's the most boring man alive. His stint in Ferris Bueller's Day Off wasn't acting--it was him honestly thinking he had mad teaching skills and that his lecture on supply-side economics was the best thing since "I Have a Dream..."

...Go eff yourself, Ben Stein.

Monday, January 09, 2006


This site is v. cool: http://postsecret.blogspot.com/. People anonymously send in postcard confessions. Some are funny, some are clever, but some are a little sad (not to mention disturbing), too. One of the first ones pisses me off a bit, actually. But that's a rant that would serve no good, so moving on!...now that I'm reading more down the page, I'm getting a bit depressed...Maybe I should rethink visiting this page! Other people's secrets are too much of a burden.

Some examples (but you really need the visuals): "I gave up a child for adoption 25 years ago. She found me. I wish to God I had had an aportion instead."; "Sometimes, I sneak pieces of my husband's wardrobe into the charity pile because I don't have the heart to tell him that his taste in clothing sucks."

Two Non-Fiction Books.

I've read two really amazing non-fiction books lately...all right, I haven't finished the second one yet, but I'm almost there. The books are Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything by Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner and Blink : The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell.

Freakonomics is about...wow, I've suddenly confused myself because they're both v. similar and I'm trying to remember what book was about what. In Freakonomics, the authors show how asking the right questions can unravel mysteries about life and connect things we had no idea could be connected (and that correlation doesn't equal causality, something many people could still stand to learn). Don't worry--you don't have to like or understand economics to enjoy this book (I do, though. Like economics.). This book doesn't feel like it's about economics. It's about life. And who knew economics could solve so many crimes (like finding out which teachers cheat on standardized tests). It certainly draws some controversial conclusions, like attributing the fall of crime rates in the 1990s to legalized abortion and saying that many parenting acts, like reading to your child or playing him Baby Mozart, really don't change the outcome of your child's personality or intellect. But it also presents some compelling arguments and evidence for every controversial claim.

Blink is the one I haven't finished yet, but it's my favorite of the two. It explores intuition and how some people make better snap judgments than others, how we "thin slice" situations. It's really amazing. There's this man who studies conversations between a married couple (the conversation has to be related to their life together, like an argument about their dog) and he can tell within minutes whether they will still be married in 15 years--his success rate is something like 95% percent! There are many other little stories and examples of how our intuition is so powerful. It discusses how what we think we want and like are usually different than what our actions tell--like, what we think we want in a person goes completely out the window once we actually become in contact with people (to demonstrate, the book presents a study on speed dating). It also shows how that once we start to analyze things, our accuracy about things becomes weaker (like, if we don't think about it, we can pick a criminal out of a lineup better than if we went over what the person looked like with the police before we looked at a lineup).

To test your own subconscious about issues like race, age, and sexuality, go to www.implicit.harvard.edu and take a few of their quizzes. You'll probably be surprised by your results.