Summer

Jun. 25th, 2017 07:17 pm
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Ugh, summer is upon us, and it is woefully hot. Since I lack air conditioning at home, I almost wish that I was taking summer classes in order to escape the heat. I needed a break, though. Last semester wasn't necessarily difficult, but it was draining. This was most likely caused by my lack of personal writing over the last few months, which left me without a true creative outlet. Academic writing can be fun, but it's not necessarily the best form of expression even if I do manage to express myself through my interests and choice of topics at times.

So, I have stalled out o my writing and decided to withdraw from [community profile] getyourwordsout because I was so far behind. I could have continued plodding along, but the whole thing was stressing me out. Basically, I was behind from the start. I'm not great at dealing with failure and overcoming my shortcomings, so I just pushed it to the back of my mind. I will probably try again next year.

I finally saw Wonder Woman last week with my family, and I heartily enjoyed it. I did not grow up with Wonder Woman or comics, but I enjoy superhero movies in general. I went to support the female director and the idea of a female-led superhero flick without any personal investment in the character. In spite of that, this was the least bored I've been at the movies in a long while. This makes sense because it has a lot of the narrative tropes that I enjoy. Very mild spoilers ) Basically, I want to be her. If I read comic books, I'd probably be doing that right now.

I also rewatched the Fantastic Beasts movie, and I felt like I liked it a lot more this time. I always enjoyed the world-building and characters, but the story felt lacking. While I still think it could have been better, I felt way more invested in the story this time around. I also still think Newt is a refreshing lead, and I am always happy to see more Hufflepuff characters in the limelight.

I wasn't interested in the fandom back when I first watched it, but I am curious now. I havent gone looking for fics, but I would love some recs. I don't know who is still paying attention to this half-dead journal, but fic recs for Fantastic Beasts would be much appreciated if you have any.
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The last few days have been eventful and productive, media-wise. I went to see the Welcome to Night Vale live show "Ghost Stories" on Friday night in LA, and it was great. The weather guest was Erin McKeown, who provided the weather for the most recent episode of the podcast. She played that song ("The Queer Gospel") as well as several others. I decided that I really like her music. She has a good voice, but what I really appreciate is the lyrics of her songs. Just that night, she played songs about LGBTQ self-love and acceptance, immigration, and the beauty and wonder of living the creative life.

The show itself... Spoilers because it was so good )

On Saturday, I watched the first few episodes of Stranger Things on Netflix. I'm on episode six, and it's really great so far. I wasn't even alive in the majority of the 80s, but it really hits the nostalgia spot. I also watched the Fellowship of the Rings movie for the first time ever and fell in love with it. It was very well done, and it made me fall in love with the story all over again. It's kind of a shame that I didn't see these movies when they originally came out, but I'm trying desperately not to be pop culture illiterate anymore.

Speaking of which, I also watched Moulin Rouge for the first time ever this weekend. I enjoyed it, but I wasn't so convinced by the insta-love. I didn't really connect to the characters as much as I thought I should. On the other hand, I just loved the fact that Kylie Minogue and Placido Domingo were the fairy and the man in the moon respectively. Watching it reminded me a lot of Phantom of the Opera, and I suppose that both musicals have a lot of crossover appeal. I guess that it's partially that same operatic form of storytelling as Moulin Rouge has elements of La Boheme, La Traviata, and Orpheus in the Underworld. Aside from the fact that they both take place in France, they both involve creative types putting on a show and a musical within a musical. One of the characters unexpectedly takes the place of another on stage a la "The Point of No Return." Plus, both musicals begin in the future when all the action is over and done with and tell the story in flashback. Come to think of it, I bet they have a lot in common if I were to sit down and think about it some more.

So, in short, I became less pop culture illiterate this weekend. It's nice not living under a rock for a change.

I also watched Toonami on Satruday evening. I love how it has become a fixture of my week again. Not since the days of Yu Yu Hakusho have I been so eager to catch every episode. I think it'f fitting that Hunter x Hunter is the main reason why since they were both created by Yoshihiro Togashi. I've meant to check out Hunter x Hunter for years, but it's on Toonami now and all of those teenage feelings are coming flooding back. The team dynamics remind me a lot of those from the main cast of YYH. Kurapika is my obvious favorite, and I'm getting all kinds of Kurama flashbacks from him. My second favorite is probably Leorio, but they all have their own charm. Somone once said that if you liked the puzzle-like parts of the Maze Castle arc in YYH, you would also want to check out Hunter x Hunter. I will say that the Hunter Exams are definitely giving me a distinct Maze Castle type vibe.

That pretty much covers everything except my reading and writing habits, but that can wait for another time. I also got a new mattress on Saturday, so that's something too.
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I was technically finished with my finals yesterday, but I had to go back to school today to take care of some business for spring 2016, so it didn't feel like I was done with the semester. My brain is still winding down from the stress of the semester. Earlier, it was really bugging me a lot with this nagging feeling that I had forgotten something, but that has quieted down. The hardest part of vacation time is losing that sense of purpose that keeps me going in even the darkest of times. Still, it is just great to be writing for once and not pressured about a bunch of assignments to do. I am fairly sure about my Spanish grade, but philosophy is still a big question mark in my mind. However, I did manage to visit favorite guy and give him his present, so that worked out fine. I'm hoping that everything else works out for the best. *crosses fingers*

Now that the semester is over, I can get back to the very important business of actually living, otherwise known as spending way too much of my time on the computer. :D Seriously though, I do plan on going out more over my break because the only fun thing I did during the semester was go to visit my friend in Berkley over Thanksgiving. I will probably make my way out to see the new Star Wars movie. I wasn't fortunate enough to grow up watching the series, but the hype has certainly enticed me. I watched the original trilogy and the first two prequels for the first time last summer when I finally caved into peer pressure after waiting far too long to watch them. By the time I had finally watched the movies, I was already familiar with Joseph Campbell's wonderful The Power of Myth and the hero's journey stuff. I should probably get around to watching Revenge of the Sith while I'm at it because I have heard its the only good prequel. Besides, I'm still working on my "getting into science fiction" project," so it's about time to kick that back into full swing.

Speaking of which, I hope to use this time to catch up on my shows and reading. I'll probably give tumblr some more attention, too. Basically, media binging. There's not a lot of time to extend my yearly reading, but I do hope to finish up the books that have been marked as "currently reading" for at least months now without much progress. Maybe I can fit some sci-fi in there somewhere. To be honest, I want to drop everything and just read more of the Dresden Files, but I should finish up the year with some more diversity. I read the first six books this year, so there will be plenty of time to finish up the series next year if I so choose. I love Thomas, and Harry, of course. I wish I had started reading this series a long time ago when Harry Potter ended because it fills that hole in my heart nicely. I'm not sure I would put my enjoyment and love on the same level as my love for Harry Potter as it was still coming out, but the Dresden Files is still very addictive. I love the lush world it gives me to play around in and explore.
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Today was an utter waste. Or not. It all depends on how you look at it. I have scarcely gotten out of bed for most of it. Just in case you are looking for a suggestive meaning in that last sentence, it was nothing like that. God, I wish!

So, as I mentioned in my last entry, I went to the movies yesterday to watch Into the Woods. It was a lot of fun. Overall, I'm pleased with the adaptation although I'm not sure if I have listened to the original cast recording all the way through or watched a full performance of the stage version. At any rate, it kept the adult themes and darker elements intact. That is what makes it one of my favorite musicals, and I'm glad that they didn't Disney-fy it. I love Disney, but this story is very much the anti-Disney and the anti-fairytale. The fairytale characters have to grow up and face a world of uncertainty.

Is it wrong that I want fic for this? No, of course not,

As for today, I spent most of it reading and milling about on the Internet. I started Pandora by Anne Rice. Most people would say that I have already read all of the Anne Rice vampire books that matter, but I couldn't stay away. Pandora is one of the most powerful female vampires in her universe, and I wanted to learn more about her. Plus, there is a video of Anne Rice reading from this novel on YouTube that has always intrigued me. I meant to start by simply reading Interview with the Vampire or The Vampire Lestat to see if my viewpoint on those books has changed at all, but Pandora was listed first in the ebook collection that I downloaded, so...

Let me be the first to say that I love the ancient setting of this book. I love antiquity, and maybe that's half the reason that I'm reading the book. Anyway, this book goes farther back than I would have expected. After Pandora is done talking about the joys of writing and David Talbot, she records her life from childhood. I think that Pandora may have been a little too precocious in this section, but it didn't bother me that much. I was surprised to see how far she and Marius go back, too. The passages about her time in Antioch are intriguing as well. I have just gotten to the place where she encounters her youngest brother, Lucius.

I think that's all I care to say for now... Until next time.

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Robin

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