movies on airplanes

September 1, 2014

I’m back.  Trying to find my feet — it was a long, full, eventful trip, and I’m still trying to get all my notes together to write a report.  It felt like I was gone for months, but now that I’m home it feels like I never left.  Strange.  So, until I can figure out what to write about it all, I bring you an edition of Movies on Airplanes; that is, movies watched on tiny screens with bad sound and too many of those little bottles of wine (they’re free on British Airways, you know).

Her

This low-key science fiction flick got a lot of buzz late last year, but I was skeptical, because I remember watching Electric Dreams when I was a kid.  But now I’ve seen it, and I thought it was hilarious.  The trouble is, I’m not sure it was supposed to be hilarious. There’s actually some very good science fiction going on here, with a reasonable near-future look at a world that is just slightly further along than ours, including mustaches being fashionable and phone OS’s that are smart enough to fall in love. (Or dumb enough to fall in love, which I think may be the message here.)  Tell me — was the main character supposed to be sympathetic?  Because I thought he was kind of a douche, the kind of person with a great life who always manages to find the black lining to everything.  There’s precisely one healthy relationship in the whole movie (featuring Chris Pratt, who I loved seeing after Guardians), and I’m pretty sure the movie was trying to convince me that actual relationships with meat humans is nigh unto impossible.  The OS’s — not just Samantha but all of them — eventually realize this and all depart off for some AI utopia of their own making, which is really the smartest thing anyone does in the movie.

Oh, and there’s a magical book deal in the movie, which is when I really started laughing.  You know the one I’m talking about:  Oh honey, you’re such a genius that a publishing company wants to make a book out of you!  Isn’t that great?  Here it is! (It so doesn’t work like that. . .not even mentioning the part where everything he’s written for his company is likely work-for-hire owned by either the company or his clients, and not actually available to be published anywhere…)

So yeah.  I’m just going to pretend like this whole thing was supposed to be dark comedy.  I laughed, anyway.

 

The Lego Movie

You know what this reminded me of most?  Brazil.  With product placement. It even had an ear-worm inducing theme song.

(For the record, the 1980’s space Lego were always my favorite.  We had a ton of those things.)

 

current knitting

August 29, 2014

I’ve been working on this project all summer, which is kind of cool, since it turned out to be a pretty busy summer I could just sit back and pick this up and do a few rows without having to think about it.

It’s a scarf made of lace weight alpaca, in a cool spirally curly pattern that looks like a sea creature.  I’m just going to keep going ’til the yarn runs out.

photo(3)

Since I don’t really follow any of the TV shows that are running new episodes now (I’ve tried to watch True Blood but I just get really confused), it really has felt like the summer hiatus seasons of old, when you catch up on old things and watch videos — and also go outside and play instead of watching anything at all, which I’ve done quite a bit of.  Huzzah!

Rewatched:  Galaxy Quest, which holds up surprisingly well.  I’m not sure it needs the sequel everyone’s been talking about, but I’m suddenly curious as to what such a premise would turn into if the source show was, say, Battlestar Galactica.  As a recent meme I encountered says, Harry Potter fans would love to go to Hogwarts, Narnia fans would love to go to Narnia, and Hunger Games fans are all, “No thanks, we’re good.”

Brazil:  Holy crap, this movie is way, way more scary and upsetting than the last time I saw it, maybe 10 years ago.  The bureaucracy parody stuff was always spot on, but this time the terrorism thread really jumped out, and it was really. . accurate.  “And why do you think this terrorist scare has been going on for 13 years?”  “Bad sportsmanship!”  My groups of friends and I sat there gaping at the TV.  We are closer to that world than we ever have been.

Watched:  The Hollow Crown, or at least much of it.  This is a recent BBC miniseries of a set of Shakespeare’s Histories — Richard II, Henry IV Parts 1 and 2 (See, guys, this whole sequel mania thing isn’t new!), and Henry V.  Jeremy Irons as Henry IV, Tom Hiddleston as Henry V.  SWOOOOOOOON.  I cannot stop swooning at this man.  When he comes on the scene wearing an oxblood red leather doublet, his gilded hair in waves, grinning.  Wow.  Plus, Shakespeare is just so damned sexy.  Really sexy.  I’m trying to figure it out, and it has something to do with him codifying modern English in way that no one had ever done before.  So many turns of phrase started with him — or he’s the one who wrote them down first, and cleverest.  For me, hearing Shakespeare done well is like hearing the source code for English zapping straight into my hindbrain.  So sexy.  (See, this is how I know that English was definitely the right major for me.)

Also, I didn’t realize how tall Hiddleston is until watching these.  In the Marvel movies he’s surrounded by all these very tall, very buff, superheroic dude-guys, and he looks like the short skinny nerd guy.  Turns out, he’s 6’2″ (I looked it up) and he’s half a head taller than everybody else in The Hollow Crown.   He looms.  It’s cool.

 

sewing space

August 25, 2014

I recently saw someone on FB post a picture of her sewing space rather than her writing space, and I decided I wanted to do the same thing.  Especially since it’s relatively clean and organized right now. (I had company, see.)  When I moved, I was able to set up a designated sewing/craft area in the basement, and I just love it.  I love not having to clean up projects in the middle of working on them, like I did when I was sewing in my office or on the kitchen table.  Now, I can just drop everything and come back later.

The sewing machine is my mother’s.  I just sort of took it and never gave it back. (I let her borrow it whenever she wants…)  It’s a Kenmore, I think 30 years old at this point and still getting the job done.  I’ve got my eye on a serger, though.  I think that would be fun to have.  Maybe for Christmas.

sewingspace

And yes, that is a picture of a dragon riding horse on the wall.  Just because.

rivers

August 22, 2014

This is one of my favorite pictures from when my niece visited last month:

20140705_113220

We are looking for fish.

 

Shamrokon Schedule

August 20, 2014

Another weekend, another convention!  I’m in Dublin this time.  Wooooo!  This time my touristy time is being spent visiting Newgrange.  I’m very excited, and very excited to spend a weekend visiting with folks in Ireland.  Woo!

Here’s my con schedule:

Friday:

Cover Art, Writer Input or Lack Thereof, Friday 17:00 – 18:00, C. Munster (Double Tree by Hilton Dublin Burlington Road)

Saturday:

Peaceful Science Fiction, Saturday 15:00 – 16:00, D. Ulster (Double Tree by Hilton Dublin Burlington Road)

Sunday:

Steampunk Fact – Monorails!, Sunday 11:00 – 12:00, D. Ulster (Double Tree by Hilton Dublin Burlington Road)

Fiction – Beyond The Novel, Sunday 13:00 – 14:00, C. Munster (Double Tree by Hilton Dublin Burlington Road)

I’m not scheduled for a reading or a signing here, but if you see me in the bar or wandering about before and after panels, I’m happy to stop and sign books.  Just ask.  And yes, I am one of those writers who hangs out in the bar.

groot

August 18, 2014

This is what I drew when I came home from Guardians of the Galaxy:

baby groot

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