Wednesday, January 30, 2008

so i went to see the farnsworth invention tonight and, i gotta say, i was disappointed. i think my expectations were unusually high because the play was written by aaron sorkin, the man responsible for bringing us the west wing, the american president, and some other stuff like charlie wilson's war. and he's a pretty damn smart guy and a great writer. so while the F.I. was a reasonably intelligent and interesting show, it didn't have the level of wit or insight i expected from my man aaron.
my big complaint was that basically, i think the show just took a really interesting topic and then focused on the most banal and uncontroversial aspects. the play is about the invention of the television, by a guy named philo farnsworth, played by jordana brewster's best friend from DEBS (you straight people might know him from Loser, where he played the skeevy roommate). it basically follows farnsworth's attempts to perfect the television, juxtaposed with the struggles of David Sarnoff (Hank Azaria) to develop radio, and finally, to Sarnoff's underhanded means of getting the television patent within his company (RCA and NBC)'s holdings.
there's definitely a lot of interesting stuff in there. personally, i thought the most interesting was the idea of how radio and television would be used as mediums, and the heavily commercial form they would finally take. my sister thought it was the issue of a scientific community versus intellectual property. but aaron sorkin seemed to think that the most interesting topic was how Sarnoff screwed Farnsworth over. which was certainly a sad tale, but i felt like there was nothing beyond that to make the story unusual. science history is full of stories like that, everyone is always stealing ideas from other people. and especially in this case, where Sarnoff sees that television is gonna screw radio over, so he basically has to do something to save his own hide.
when i complained about it to my mom (yes, it was a family outing), she said that she thought it was interesting, because she remembered hearing about the beginning of television back in the day. which is a fair point, i guess. it does teach you about a very important historical event, and bring it to life before your eyes. so, i guess that's good. it's just that from aaron sorkin, i expect great. what am i thinking though, that guy loves crack.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

the place where i'm interning is having a premiere of their new documentary on feb 8- check it out.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

whoa, juno was nominated for best picture, and ellen page for best actress? that's just crazy talk. i mean, i liked the movie just fine, and i like ellen page enough to watch all that youtube had to offer on her. that is to say, i like her quite a lot, some might call it "crushin'," and i'm certainly excited to see her future work. but an oscar, now? for a not very good movie? it must've been a hella slow year for movies. i wouldn't know, since i've only been here for three months of it. but if these are the results, i can only imagine. oh well, the oscars are all politics anyway. not like the emmy's or the tony's, which are about pure, unadulterated integrity.
ugh, i'm working on a saturday night and it's making me sad, and its making me take it out on ellen page. i'm sorry. much love.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

my new (semi) celebrity crush, who incidentally went to a summer program with my friend Jenna, also attended by America Ferrar.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

A picture from a friend I met in Lijiang. Badass.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

So I spent Friday night hanging out with some friends, watching a recent Swat grad competing on Jeopardy. She didn't win, but it's okay because she goes to Harvard Law, so in the grand scheme of things, she really did win.
Anyway, we'd traveled all the way out to Queens to watch the damn thing, and after watching that and Wheel of Fortune, it was still only 8 o'clock. So we watched Candleshoe, this Disney movie from the early 70s with a preteenaged Jodie Foster. I don't really have a main point to this entry, but if I did, it would be that young Jodie Foster is the cutest little gaymo in the world. Probly if you look closely at the Water Babies sunscreen bottle that she posed for, you'd think, what an adorable little lesbian. It's interesting how when someone is young enough to still be labeled a "tomboy," they can act so unrestrainedly gay and no one will raise an eyebrow or label their behavior as "queer." As we watched the first scene, where young Jodie is running around with a bunch of street kids wearing an oversized army vest, my friend Jason commented, "See, people think that Jodie came out this year, but actually she came out in this movie." It's funny that Jodie's sexuality has been in debate for so long. If you just pay attention- the clothes, the attitude, even her interaction with the other girl her age all scream gay. It's cool to watch a little girl acting gay and know that she will grow up to become a lesbian, because most talk of homosexuality begins at puberty, when sexuality becomes part of the public consciousness. As a homosexual, your life is sort of divided into before and after your coming out. Of course, on an individual level, you do your best to reconcile these two very different selves, looking for earlier signs of your sexuality in order to see your life in an organized, linear fashion. But I feel like on a societal level, even within the gay community, homosexuality is seen as adult. You see kids you might suspect will be gay, but mostly its kind of left alone until they come out. This makes the coming out experience, which varies in its degrees of painfulness and upheaval, a necessary part of a gay life. Few gay children see themselves becoming the adults they imagined, and I think that kind of fracturing makes a huge difference to a person's life. Not that I view coming out as negative; I would never go back to the way that I failed to question aspects of society before I came out, nor would I trade the thrill of finding a fulfillment I hadn't previously thought possible. There are many facets of what it means to be gay that one does need to be an adult to truly understand and appreciate. But still, it seems weird to me how compared with straight life, the homosexual life requires a point in which there is some sort of huge turnaround. And that's why its so refreshing to see that, retrospectively, the homosexuality is present in a child, even if it was unacknowledged. You want to be able to set them on track early, so they never have to re-evaluate, they can just plan it the right way from the beginning.

Friday, January 18, 2008

wow, i can't believe rent is ending. well i guess i can; ever since joey fatone was allowed on that stage, it was clear that show was no longer a groundbreaking and original piece of theater, but another beauty and the beast or mama mia for a bensonhurst boy to dream of singing in. but let's take a step back to more than ten years ago, when i was in seventh grade. to be fair, i am a huge musical fan, which is probably why i was initially drawn to the show. but for real, that show made me grow up. i remember singing innocently "to leather, to dildos," when my sister informed me what a dildo was. i remember spending the night on 41st street to get the student rush tickets, and meeting all kinds of alternative (read: gay) people. i remember meeting taye diggs before he helped stella get her groove back. i remember sewing my own little aids quilt for a bio project. i remember lecturing the people in my art class about why they should be accepting of gay people, long before i knew that title applied to myself.
it's hard to reconcile my feelings about rent with the fact that pretty much every teenaged girl was obsessed with it. i like to think of myself as somewhat original, or off the beaten track in personal taste. but i guess it doesn't really matter what the show meant for anyone else. for me, it was a catapult into adulthood, and an awakening to the realities of the world, in all its complexities, that i never got out of "carousel."

Thursday, January 17, 2008

ooh, two movies about china! still life and summer palace. sorry to make you feel used, blog, but i just made this post so i would remember the names of the movies.
uh, not too much else is new in my life.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Overheard in Ny: the amanda edition.
hey y'all, just sitting in the bookstore and thought i'd share the half of a phone convo i heard.
middle aged white man: "... so she said, 'i didn't see you there,' and i said, well here's what i said. 'that's bullshit!' and then i threw her mail at her. and then i said, 'you know what, when you moved in here, i thought you were a class above. but you're just regular, obnoxious park slope yuppies!'"

Sunday, January 13, 2008

everyone makes fun of me for opting to take a cab or a car service over the subway if it's after like ten. and sometimes i seem kind of paranoid, like when i took the train with my friend jenna because she always does, and this seedy looking guy across from us started motioning at us. i was like "ugggh see this is why i don't take the train!" and then we realized he was telling us jenna had dropped her hat on the floor.
but honestly, today reinforced the reason i prefer to spend the ten bucks on a car. it was about 10:30 when i finished my shift at the bookstore, so i figured that was close enough and i could just take the train. so i get on, and notice no one is sitting on the end of the car where i am. it's because there's a guy who has taken his shoes and jacket off and is lounging across a bunch of seats. i figured i'm a native brooklynite, right, so i should be tough enough to deal with it. after a couple of stops, i notice that he's stood up, and i think "oh, well maybe he's putting his clothes back on." i glance over and see that he's in a sort of squat lunge and, i think, rubbing his balls. that or taking a shit. so i gave up and moved over to where the other four or five people in the car were sitting. after i moved, he sat in the seat where i had been, and kept looking at me till i reached my stop. so there.
it's like yeah, maybe half the time nothing at all happens and its fine. but i'm not down with how scared i feel when i come in contact with the train crazies. i guess if you're with someone else it's not so bad, but when it's just you and a crazy, that shit gets real. and several times, there has been real shit.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

duh. i never appreciated the sky till i lived in china. now, every day i'm amazed at how blue and beautiful it is. in beijing, you get a blue sky maybe once a month in the winter, the rest of the time it's polluted and gross. but isn't that what we love about china?

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

i eat like a circus performer. lately anyway, because my internship is in a kind of junky eating area, so i have hot dogs for lunch and pizza for dinner. for those of you who know me, this is my heaven. i'm really feeling like i should get a gym membership though, because one can't eat like that without becoming the incredible fat woman. or i don't know, i haven't been to the circus in a while, i'm not really sure what kinds of acts they have there. when i saw they were in town, i really wanted to go, but tickets cost like 30 bucks. i may eat hot dogs and pizza every day, but if i'm gonna spend more than ten bucks on entertainment, it's gonna be a nice classy bway production. even though that shit is expensive now.
oh also, my friend jenna is having a fundraiser this saturday for her theater company, it's 20 bucks and includes a bunch of awesome bands, food, and all you can drink. it's at the producers club, 358 W 44th street, and it's gonna be the bomb. for realz. even i'm going to be there. support the local theater, support your drinking habit.

Monday, January 07, 2008

haha, i love this interview with kate moenig and leisha hailey from the L word. it's like, they're both reasonably smart people, and they have to sort of try to back up the choices made by the mighty ilene chaiken in terms of plot, characters etc. but basically, they could either be honest or they could sound like total idiots by saying, "yes, it totally made sense that my character said she loved this girl and then on the next episode the girl wasn't on the show anymore." i'm glad to say that they didn't do that, although i feel like mama chaiken isn't going to be any to happy. basically, they take the complete opposite road and dis everything that has happened on the show. rightly so. dana getting killed off, shane's break up with carmen, shane's relationship with paige, alice's unlikely relationship with tasha, alice's disappearing bisexuality, and so on. they do manage to say a few nice things about being able to contribute (although obviously not enough), but it's comforting to know that these women we look up to feel the same way as us about the show. oh also, i like that they totally leak upcoming stuff. or at least, kate moenig says that shane's going to date jenny, and leisha hailey is like, tasha's days are numbered. honestly, while not being unpleasurable to watch, the L word is unbelievably bad. like, couldn't they just hire the writers from party of five? not that i think that show is well written, but it seems like its a similar but not ridiculous style of writing. the big problem is really continuity, in plot and characters. the writers act like no one watches more than two episodes of the show. which is not at all the case, moreso than most other shows. we are a captive audience. we don't have another show to watch. so we watch it all. so pay us back by respecting that we are not retarded, and we remember everything that has happened to these characters. also, i wish i had showtime. gah.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

here's a funny story. on new year's eve my friend's car was robbed. okay, it doesn't start out that funny, but i was already asleep when it happened so i was unconcerned. the cops called him at 8 o'clock the next morning to tell him that they had found the perps (is that the word? whatever it sounds cool). it was a married couple who had worked a couple of cars in the neighborhood. we were kind of puzzled that they would break into ro's car, cuz let's just say it's not exactly "new" or "working." but apparently they had seen a samurai sword from his halloween costume sitting in the back seat, and thought it was a real samurai sword. yeah, real bright obvs. when they discovered that the sword was plastic, they took the only thing of value in the car, a gold chain with a jewish star on it. except that it cost about fifty cents, and was part of my friend's jewish pimp costume.
the woman was caught breaking into another car, and the cops apprehended her partner, but because they hadn't caught him in the act, there was nothing to make it stick for him. until... the cops found that the woman had the chain from ro's necklace on her, and the man had the jewish star. bam! proof that he had been a part of the break in. now, there are no words for how dumb these people must be. i don't think i could ever understand the choices they made. why did they split up the necklace? why?? but i guess it's just something we'll have to accept. also, i guess sometimes cops can be nice, cuz the guy ro worked with on the case offered to give him a free voucher. for what, i don't know.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

so tila tequila wants another shot at love. all i'm gonna say is "fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me." and i'm speaking for all lesbians when i say that. yes, we got excited and thought we were actually enjoying tila tequila, because of a certain futch named Dani. but remember when we all learned the harsh lesson not to trust a trashy mtv program starring a bisexual stripper? honestly, how did we even fall for it the first time? but anyway, we did learn our lesson, so if mtv is looking for anything equal to the excitement about the original, they can all go blow themselves.
okay starbucks people, i don't want to say any more about this, but if i order a non-fat latte, do you really think i want whipped cream on it?

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

new years. what can i say? happy new years! my cab got so lost coming home from williamsburg that we had to take a trip through the city to get back to brooklyn heights. thus, reconfirming my hatred of the williamsburg area. williamsburg has never not been a huge pain in my ass. i don't want to hear about it. if i were marty markowitz, i would petition to make williamsburg not part of brooklyn.
no offense to people who have to live there cuz it's cheap; i know not everyone's parents have a wicked basement. a wicked basement which, as of today, has cable. this is quite a fitting new year's gift. i can now officially live downstairs. the past few months have been pretty cramped, living right next door to my parents room, and finding them in my room watching my tv every time i came home. now i'm my own woman, with my own pad. i feelz good.
right now i'm watching the america's top model where tyra freaks out and yells at that girl, "you better take responsibility for yourself." brilliant. but also, kind of oddly in line with my new year's resolution. i don't think i've ever really made a new year's resolution before, or not anything besides like, i will lose weight or i will cut my toenails more regularly. this year, i feel like i really want to challenge myself. or i guess, take responsibility for myself. basically, i want to make sure that i get out and go to more gay things, and like really get into the scene.
it's been hard so far, because coming home after a year in china, i've appreciated my friends like i never did before. i really cherish the time i spend with them, especially the friends that will be away at grad school or in the air force (!). it's hard to leave the comfort of being with people whose company i enjoy so much, to something that's really pretty new for me.
while my new year's eve was a ton of fun, it really drove home how important it is that i start moving more in that direction. i had an experience that was almost straight out of south of nowhere, where spencer goes on the date with the guy and she's like, "i'm gay." and he's like, "well you've never been on a date with me before." and it was with someone i considered a pretty good friend. not that i think i should blame myself for that, but i feel like i need to put myself in situations where i won't just end up feeling bad.
i'm also writing about this in the blog to mark the end of complaining to my straight friends about my situation. they have been very sympathetic, but i think if someone bitched that much to me about how they need new friends, i'd be like, get out of my face. so there. i'm going to do it, and not just talk about it. resolved!