windemere: (geekin' out)
It's such a strange thing; graduating. You've done all the work already. You've already been told you have received your degree/diploma/whatnot, and it is therefore mostly an excuse for a party.

I was really too tired today to party and it's not nearly as fun without alcohol anyways.

Day 2 of jet lag is always my worst, so I didn't sleep last night and I spent the morning going flat out - on foot - here, there, and everywhere. By the time we got to the reception I just wanted to lay down, or pass out - it was a toss-up.

There ceremony was great (short) and everyone said all the right words. It wasn't particular special (PhDs are treated like MAs are), but at least we got to go first. And then wait for everyone else to do it! The woman beside me kept up a hilariously running commentary under her breath about the pomp and circumstance so I was incredibly entertained.

We stood outside in the freezing (literally) cold too
much and my coat would fit over my robes so I was just a bit miserable. But Bob made my mother tea and is now the greatest person ever because he waited with my parents for a cab after the reception ended for 30 minutes even though he was supposed to be back at work.

Everyone was super nice and huggy and Ross said great things about me to my parents and to me. And I caught up with a lot (though not all) of friends. Not bad for 2.5 days in the city!

All that is left is coffee tomorrow morning with my 'new' twin Dr A (me being now Dr A as well) and to pay pilgrimage to Richard's tomb, something I should have done on Wednesday. Supposed to rain, so I hope our dead king appreciates my sacrifice.

I miss this part of my life already and I won't ever have it back. It was challenging and interesting and incredibly easy. Unlike the years to come.
windemere: (Barrels out of bond)
Wreck next December, I tell you, that will be me.

I'm not sure I need to warn that this post contains spoilers, but SPOILERS! Also, it rambles on a rather long way, so I don't really expect anyone to read it, but I need to work this out on 'paper' for myself.


A few things to start, in no particular order so that we can get them out of the way.

1) Martin Freeman, I LOVE YOU.
2) Everything Gandalf does is just awesome sauce. And nice guest spot by Radagast.
3) The entire scene(s) in Erebor were a hell of a lot better than I thought, and I had some pretty high expectations, let me tell you.
4) When I read the book, Thranduil's caves is the only thing I could never wrap my head around; elves, living in caves, wha? But I think PJ's version is perfect and the entrance was PERFECT.
5) Beyond a slight issue with Kili/Tauriel (see below) I have a newfound respect for Evangeline Lilly because WOW.

And now the slightly less intelligent stuff begins.

Grav made a very valid point about Two Towers several days ago, and it still stands. because TT has one of the best openings ever for a sequel movie and…this didn't. Seriously, it didn't. It felt like the opening for the EE, but this was the theatre version. Baring that, however, once we got over the initial PJ cameo and a lot of dirty looks from Breelanders, the movie got rolling with a bang. And then several more bangs.

I'm glad the Beorn stuff was short, I really am. It's boring to watch the dwarves kick around on holiday for a while. And the Mirkwood stuff that followed really set the tone for the rest of it. I loved the stoned dwarves and I seriously closed my eyes for most of the spider stuff, because after about two minutes I just decided nightmares were not worth it. But what I heard sounded pretty damn awesome, so I'm going with that. The set was spectacular.

And Legolas didn't bother me at all. I attribute this to the fact he didn't talk much.

Thranduil bothered me a lot, but I figured that one was coming. Because although Lee Pace looks a lot like Orlando Bloom, I thought the acting was a bit…off. Which is probably not his fault, really, but it bugged me during those scenes. The rest of the scenes in the woodland realm though, did make up for it. The dungeons, seriously, the DUNGEONS. And THE WINE CELLAR. And…someone I was with made a complaint about elves getting drunk and snoring but IT'S IN THE BOOK. And it was flipping hilarious. Also, possibly the moment I can identify loving Bilbo the most.

The barrels was better than I thought, though the CGI here was at it's worst. Now, I know from last year's experience that if I saw this in 48 frames (which is nearly impossible to do in England) then that wouldn't be an issue, so I can't really fault the movie for that. But it was annoying in regular 3D, but not enough that I didn't really enjoy the chase. I also laughed more than one should when the main heroes are being shot at by orcs.

Obviously the Kili getting hurt thing was massively contrived for later use in movie 3, but it did throw a nice chink in the works and the thing I LOVED MOST ABOUT THIS MOVIE was that half the time I didn't know what was coming. If you've not read the books, you can't understand what it is like to sit through one of these films and not know what's next. It's WONDERFUL. It was the thing I wished most about LotR and could never have.

Here is where I point out that I'm totally okay with the love 'triangle' except for the fact that I think Tauriel was nicer to Kili upfront then she should have been. I just needed one more scene were something happens to bridge that jump. But I'll imagine something in my head and it'll be okay (or I'll write something and it will be okay). Healing scene in Bard's house was another throwback to Fellowship, obviously, but Bofur gets the most marks for finding athalas and surviving an orc attack at the same time.

Bard. Laketown. BARD. That part is going to be so amazing in movie 3. I just, have no words. It was perfect. Luke Evans, thank you.

We don't need to talk about Gandalf again, right? Because the trip to the tomb of the Nine was unexpected and BLOODY COOL. And then Gandalf telling Radagast to go tell Galadriel what's happening is, really, going to pay off hugely in movie 3. But that part that's going to pay off the most is the part where Dol Guldur is empty of it's armies and Sauron's looking at other things and Thrain is going to bust Gandalf out of his - rather humiliating - predicament.

I said Erebor was perfect right? So we don't need to go into that again. I am happy to Bilbo & Smaug stuff, though fantastic, didn't go on any longer. I think they timed that perfectly. And yes, gold statue, hugely contrived, but massively effective too. The furnace room was pretty damn (I'm running out of words) amazing. And the fact that Thorin, after 150 years, still remembers how to do everything is a nice little throwback to him as a blacksmith in the years after. Even if the surfing down the river of molten gold was a gimmick.

One of the people I went with, who was worried she wouldn't like it, being a book purist, said she really enjoyed it…up until the end. She loathed the end. And I can understand why. But I didn't loath the end. I was wondering where they would end it and knew it ended on a cliffhanger, and this was, to me perfect. The look of utter despair on Bilbo's face is stunning (again, see point 1) above). And the cut to the song…nearly brought me to tears. Or would have, had aforementioned person not chosen that moment to lean over and say 'I hated that'. I didn't get to listen to the whole song too, but I've heard it before. I think it fit perfectly here. It really did what it was meant to.

Non-book people are now going to go out in droves and buy the book, if they haven't already. That would annoy me a lot not knowing the outcome. Of course, knowing the outcome annoys me because I know how hard movie 3 is going to be to top that.

In other words, I liked it. But it took me until this morning to realise that. I liked it more than movie 1, in fact. I have big hopes for next year.

But it's still not Rings. And that's no one's fault except Tolkien's.



In no relation whatsoever, I had a fight with my hair this morning and I lost. I had it all perfect except for one piece that wouldn't lie down and in my bid to tame it I destroyed the whole hairstyle. So it's in a ponytail now. Stupid hair.
windemere: (barrels out of bond)
I'm assuming, once the DVD comes out in March, that perhaps there might be other fan vids on youtube than the heaps and heaps of Fili/Kili slash? Or worse, Thorin/Fili/Kili slash? Also, set to much better music than seems to currently be on offer. One can only hope.

On that note, the fan vids after the EE of There and Back Again are going to KILL ME. I'm going to need therapy or some other fandom that doesn't kill off main charactes.

[On that note as well, everyone on my f-list has read the Hobbit right? We all know how this ends?]

Still going...I will not read The Hobbit. I will not read The Hobbit. I will finish Cloud Atlas so I have some idea what the hell is going on when I see the movie, and I will spend the next week squeeing over Richard [the III, honestly, which Richard did you think I was talking about?] and then finish Battle Royale. I will not read The Hobbit. Not until August 2014.

Lastly, there are some really depressing character driven Spooks fan vids on YouTube. To be fair, the writers and Lucas North have made it rather easy on the fans. Richard Armitage (yes, yes, other Richard, though apparently he might have been named after the King? Which amuses me? In a really ironic sort of way?) does tortured (pun entirely intended) really well. I feel this will come in handy in about, oh, 17 months?

See, I totally made a circular post. Aren't I awesome?

Uh, Fili & Kili fic is going...well...had to go track down the script again. I seem to be quoting Bilbo more than anything. I should probably be worried about that.

Spooks fic is up to the second commercial break. No one has died yet, but I have high hopes for at least some blood later on. Of course, I wrote the ending as the teaser so I know where it ends up...basically. Always start a spy thriller with a gun to someone's head.

And Castle this week? Can I just say? EVIL BASTARD. It's sort of like Heroes all over again, except worse. And I am missing Alexis and Martha these days. Feels like it's been ages since we've seen them. Or any Castle/Beckett kissykissy.

Again, circular post. I need to...bake a lot this weekend. And eat a lot. And see Lincoln and Richard. How is this my life? It's awesome.
windemere: (Natasha)
Yep, it's that colour. I swear to God. Specifically Thor.

I love it, but getting the red colour even when dying it from dark blonde is NOT EASY. Will need another re-dye next month, maybe a shade darker because then the unevenness will be less obvious. As it will when it's dry I'm sure. I'm judging that while it's wet right now, in bad lighting.

Wonder how long before the red fades?

This is not my first red period, but how else does one play Natasha for Hallowe'en?
windemere: (dreamcatcher)
IMG_1403

And it's awesome!!! My new desk chair is all comfy and now I just have to get back to transcription. Blurgh. Tonight is Independence Day drinks and tomorrow is meetings. But Friday...maybe.

It's so quiet here!
windemere: (Default)
Would you look at that? The family finally got their ducks in order. Apparently my mother has done a 180* in the last week. I am going to attribute it to her being ABSOLUTELY OVERWHELMINGLY PROUD OF HER DAUGHTER and not, you know, other things. Yeah, because that sounds better.

=> London to Denver return (direct) and a few days in a nice hotel in London showing the parentals around a city they have sworn never to visit. The Aunt will inevitably be pissed about something, but other than sharing a hotel room with her (and making her pay for meals), there's really no other interaction needed. I can enjoy Denver on my own, if needed. Ooh, now I'm thinking of a side trip to Vail for day! [Totally because I wrote a fic set in Vail, you understand.]

Anyways, right now, things are PRETTY DAMN AWESOME on all accounts, except for that one where I'm losing my mind.

So, no change there really.

The only downside is that I won't get to see you J! Ah well, I shall have to make a trip out west at some point, if you are still there. ;)
windemere: (Default)
Wow, I did not see that one coming. I'm a little sad right now that two of my favourite actors, who seemed to be defying the Hollywood divorce rates are...getting divorced. I don't think I could be more surprised than if Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas broke it off. Sometimes, you just think it's going to last forever.

ETA: But *that* one I did. Just not quite so soon.

Random Note: How awesome is this? The aunt will be picking me up at Burlington Air Field for a day of flying around Toronto! Personal flight service FTW!

M will kill me. Or her. Or both of us.
windemere: (Default)
I think I just discovered an allergy to pears. Or maybe just that specific type of pear, which I don't think I've had before. Soon as I ate it I had a really strange taste in my mouth and my tongue is a bit...tingly and feels rough (not swollen though!) Like after I eat kiwis...which is why I don't eat kiwis anymore (though I love them).

Huh, guess I'm like Ten?

In other news, last night down the pub was brilliant! Fish and chips (in fake newspaper on a plate) and Guiness and Baileys (oh my!) and great friends. Gave up at 10ish go to head home (in the rain), because I was falling asleep! Got in bed, put my headphones in and...woke up at 3:45am tangled in said headphones. Wow, that's never happened before. I always hit the end of my play list before I fall asleep! Feeling rested today, though still tired. A few articles to read (well, more than a few), will try to eat a bit healthier than the mass amounts of fat I've had the last 2 days, and if that sky gets brighter I may go for a long walk too. And pilates. Least I did the cleaning, though laundry has been put off until tomorrow on account of not caring (and still having clean work-out clothes for today).

I am looking forward to having a washing machine in a house. [Though not a dryer, alas, but that I can live without!]

Also woke this morning to a solidified version of what I was attempting to explain to Ross on Friday. Two days late, but I'll take it for the next meeting. This time, I wrote it down.
windemere: (walter bishop)
This post is brought to you by a warning label: Don't read me!

Today I realised what a great liar I am. In theory, as well as practice, I knew this already, but only for certain things. I know, for instance, that I lie so naturally that I've usually told a lie to someone before it even occurs to me to tell the truth. It's not something I'm proud of, I hope you realise, but it is how I am. It's a product of my family, my upbringing, and an overwhelming need to appear normal and accepted by other people. And also a product of the fact that the truth usually sends people running the other way. It's a very fine line most times, but the people who inevitably tell you they never lie are, of course, lying through their teeth when they say it. No one is perfect. I tend to lie to make other people think I am, though; again, for the sake of being accepted.

As I said, it's an acknowledged character flaw. I get it.

Today was not a 'happy thesis day'. I spent the morning pissed off at myself for not doing any work yesterday and doubly annoyed that I couldn't seem to concentrate enough to work today, either. Despite the fact my flatmate didn't wake me up last night for the first time in a week, I seemed even more annoyed with her today then since she moved in, for no apparent reason. I got up on the wrong side of the bed [there's only one side], I know this. However, I had a meeting this morning where I had to put on a smile and realistically gush about the university, the phd and the museum studies department. And I did it all without stopping for even an instant to realise that, this morning, I didn't feel like gushing about any of those things, except how miserable I actually felt when I woke up. But I didn't. I lied like it was second nature.

And it is. Two years of working in a retail store where all I wanted to do was take a crystal vase and kill the customer and yet I was told time and again, by customers and staff, that I was the most pleasant individual possible; that I was always polite and well spoken and however did I find such a high level of patience? Two years, and those people didn't know me AT ALL.

Which is sort of my point. I guess that was the test that I didn't realise I'd taken (or passed) which was brought home to me this morning. I'm a great liar. My problem is, I'm even better at lying to myself.

Which is not even a character flaw. It's a disaster. I guess everyone has to be good at something.

Yes, I'm still on the wrong side of the bed and it's 7pm. If this bloody paper wasn't 4000 words longer than I wanted it to be, I'd be in a much better mood. But it's Tuesday and it's still February, so my mood still wouldn't be that good.

Grateful for: Graze (I think I'm repeating), beans on toast and slate tiles. And I don't have to explain myself.
windemere: (Default)

This post will not be about pancakes.

It is, only very rarely, that one may watch a film that changes your life - or at the very least makes you think about your life - and take away from it some appreciation that, with a little hope, will last you some years.  It is only very rarely that a film maker manages to make such a film.  And when they do, the results are spectacular.

'The Way' is the story of a journey - or rather, many journies and yet all the same - that does not preach, it does not demand, it does not tell, it does not even imply anything beyond the natural inclination of the human brain to be moved to consideration.  However, I think I would be hard pressed to find a viewer who did not take something of measure from the tale. 

The film is not about the Camino de Santiago de Compostela.  It is not about the relationship between a father and a son.  It is not about the friends you meet on the way or the journey you undertake to get somewhere.  It is not about religion or God or penance.  It is, in some ways, a measure of all and none of these things.  Like the Way of St. James, each viewer will take away their own enlightenment from watching it.

And, like those that reach the end, it is not about who you were before, but where you go afterwards.

One day, I will walk the pilgrim road from St Jean Pied to Santiago de Compostela.  I will not do it for religion, as I am not a Catholic, but I might do it for belief, and for The Road and for myself. 

Most of all, I'll do it for myself.  As everyone does. 

windemere: (Default)
Apparently I had a bit too much to drink yesterday. This hangover sucks. Staying in bed today; good thing I have books, a network cable that reaches that far, and food in the fridge (alas that the fridge is not in my room).

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Amy

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