Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Photos: Round 1

I took Stella for a walk today. It's the first one we've gone on since her surgery last Thursday. On the plus side, people walk on the far side of the path from us because she looks like a rabid raccoon (the area around her eyes is shaved and she slobbers worse than Beethoven). On the minus side, my beautiful shar-pei dog looks like a freakin rabid raccoon. 
These are some of the pictures I took with my point-and-shoot digital camera. It makes me really excited to get a digital SLR, whenever I may get that lucky. Ahem, Andy ;O)

I was completely entranced by the funky bubble seedling things on these trees.
And the fern (I know it's not a fern, but I like calling it that) that was bigger than my NEWARK! How vedy, vedy interesting.
Okay, so they're all out of order on here. This is an older one of my Stellykins cuddling on the couch with me.
Take that PETA. Ugh! That group has good intentions, but boy does it just grind my gears that they think killing pets is a good way to "free them from their misery". Take a look at Stella, and tell me that she isn't completely one hundred percent happy. (you'll be lying if you ever do tell me that, by the way.)
Ahhhh, and back to the funky seedling things

And below, I was messing with the exposure settings on my camera. The purple turned out rather nicely, don't you think?

Saturday, May 17, 2008

P.S. This movie is great

***WARNING***This review is in the prewriting stages. We'll see if I ever get back to it. Part of me wants to be a movie reviewer when I grow up, so I'm giving it a go. But it is harder than it looks, so I've decided to move on.
I always have to roll my eyes when I find on the back cover of a movie "Heartwarming tale that will make you laugh and cry," or any other variation on the expression. Ninety-nine percent of romantic comedies boast their ability to evoke these emotions. Last night, however, I watched a movie during which I did BOTH AT THE SAME TIME! Even my trusty rarely-laughs-during-a-romantic-comedy sidekick Andy really enjoyed the movie. It will make you laugh and cry, and probably both at the same time. 
In the opening scene, the dynamics of their relationship are summed up in the fight they have. Holly, played by Hilary Swank of Million Dollar Baby fame, is the stressed-out worrisome responsible wife, matched with the funny, easy-going Irishman Jerry (Gerard Butler with the remnants of his smoking hot 300 body). Holly cannot exist without a plan, and Jerry never has one. Despite their differences, they are very much in love. Jerry is smitten with Holly, and Holly cannot live without Jerry's ability to put humor into life. And then he dies, leaving Holly to try to live her life without him, a feat she finds impossible with everything left behind, his clothes in the closet, his voice in her head. Holly holes herself up in the apartment she hates until her friends arrive on her thirtieth birthday to cheer her up. Arriving shortly after them is a message from Jerry. Her friends, played by Lisa Kudrow and Gina Gershon, each have their own humorous sidestories. Kathy Bates is excellent as always playing Holly's tough-as-nails mother, whose own husband left her.
It is a movie of beginnings and endings, layering Holly and Jerry's life together with her mourning process. Jerry stays with Holly after his death by leaving her letters in an attempt to help her get over him. It really makes me excited to read the book, which will be different enough from the movie, partially because it takes place in Ireland rather than New York City.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Here...have some graham crackers... this is my first blog post, and I think I'm just going to do a general welcome. My name is Brittany. I am engaged (love you, Andy). I was born in New Mexico, raised in Ohio, but my roots are in the wonderfully cheesy state of Wisconsin. I have several projects, art and otherwise, which I hope to bring nearer to completion (true art is never "finished"). The biggest of these is the house project Andy and I have undertaken. Maybe I will post before and after pictures sometime. I can't get enough cereal. I'd eat it for all three meals every day if I could. I'm trying to go green, but that's difficult since I live about an hour away from where I work.

I don't understand this: I love my job. I don't mind going to work in the morning, and even though I count down the hours and minutes until I get to leave, I don't have that heavy feeling weighing on me that I had at several of my other jobs. However, it is the most mind-numbing repetitive job I have ever had. I change peoples' addresses and perform maintenance on investment accounts. So here is my dilemma: do I try to find a better, more challenging job with the chance that I may hate it and may want to tear my hair out with the stress, but also with the chance that I may grow or expand my horizons? I stay at my job and hope that I get hired on and move up at a place of employment that I really don't want to work for the rest of my life, even though I enjoy the safety and comfort that it affords me? Decisions, decisions.

On another note, Andy and I watched The Illusionist with Edward Norton on Sunday May 4.
I saw that it was based on a short story and looked the author up during my break at work. I decided to read some of his work that was published in The New Yorker. It turns out that I really really enjoyed reading this guy. It was kind of a throwback to my college days--it seemed like it could have been pulled out of a college textbook because it was a work of fiction in which I could actually pull out arguments and a thesis. Steven Millhauser is his name and weaving intricate narratives is definitely his game. He begins with the observation of a small event, which leads him to recall a slightly larger event, which leads him to recall an even more significant event, all of which seem random, yet nagging at the back of the mind is the thought that these are going to be connected somehow. I think the character in his novel feels the same way at some point. I was inspired by the story's main point, and it gave new meaning to my concept of the English language. Someone once told me that language is the currency of thought, which gives words value and weight. Millhauser argues the opposite, that words diminish the meanings of things, that the sun becomes less when we try to describe it, that words do not have the power to compete with the beauty of nature. In this, I could see why Wikipedia called Millhauser a Romantic. It reminded me of William Blake and the rest of the British Romantics who called for people to turn to nature to find peace and understanding.

I could go on for hours, but it is time to snuggle with my one and only favorite dog, Stella, who is curled up on my side of the bed, snoring softly, and waiting for me.