Monday, December 16, 2013

Mandela's Chambers

“It matters not how strait the gate, How charged with punishments the scroll, I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” ― William Ernest Henley

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Reactions to The Hunger Games 2: Catching Fire


The gradual plot build up followed by the consecutive wham bam thank you ma'ams of gut wrenching, fist pumping metaphorical punchlines. Well thank you. I can't even begin to express how moved I was by the entire film. My heart was racing throughout, through the walk home, and as I type this post. Themes that hit too close to home and too close to my heart. 

After a friend finished reading the trilogy he said, "Deb, you're exactly like Katniss." "In what ways?" I asked. "Watch it," he said. 

For the sheer genius in Collins' ways of incorporating very real themes into our mainstream media. The irony that is the Hunger Games vs. us as the audience, sitting there and watching those kinds of truths brought to screen.

I was discussing this with my cousin after the movie, and he shared a fair point; the entire notion of the way in which these truths are pursued are dependent on how comfortable your life is. In that, if you started with not much, and have succeeded, the system works; the system has filled your hole. In that, if you've lived a comfortable life, you tend to question - and the system doesn't fill that hole. 

At the same time, if the system didn't demand for these things in the first place, there would be no holes to fill. So are we coping, or are we asking for more (or perhaps less if we're being blunt)? And what is that for you? 

I asked a question, "if you didn't have your job, and there was no such thing as the education system, the monetary system - what would you live for?" And it's a funny question. Because obviously (?) we should all be living for something more than this. But reality is, there is a major chunk of our population that can't answer that question. Maybe it's because they've never seen the point in asking it; maybe it's because these questions simply don't exist in their lives. Maybe it's because they live for the entirety of our reality today.

Majority of our population live a life of - doing their best, reaping the rewards, breathing light through the amount of ways they manage to impress people. Which isn't my way of saying that these don't quantify as lesser virtues. Which isn't my way of dismissing reality either, but I beg to plead the question - why? 

Yes this is far fetched and yes it takes more than one angsty blog post to start any kind of revolution, but I'm not dismissing the way the world goes round. I'm challenging it, and I believe Suzanne Collins was, too. 

To sum it up, great movie, great cinematography, stellar acting, brilliant wardrobe and set design. And who couldn't love that wedding dress? And yes I could say perhaps I very strongly relate to Katniss Everdeen,  in more ways than one, save one thing. Can someone teach me how to use a bow and arrow?

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Idle

Innocence lost after life happens. The kind of playful, sushine Sadatay ethic that makes minds meet. The shade of grey that teases you and leaves you begging for more. Tainted, jaded impressions of people you knew before – sorry excuses and meaningless exchange. Forthrightness denied, anonymity embraced. Protecting ourselves from ghosts of the past. Is there adventure left? Bereavement spent as conversation to the gods. Idle desires.

/edit: I don't know what to do.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Michael's Essay - The Blind Side Movie

"Courage is a hard thing to figure. You can have courage based on a dumb idea or a mistake, but you are not supposed to question adults or your coach or your teacher. Because they make the rules. Maybe they know the best or maybe they don’t.It all depends on who you come and where they come from. Didnt at least the six hundred guys think of giving up and joining with the other side.I mean The Valley Of Death! That’s pretty salty stuff. That’s why courage is tricky, should you always do what others tell you to do. Sometimes you might not even know why you do something. I mean any fool can have courage. But honour, that’s the real reason you do something or you don’t. It’s who you are and maybe who you want to be. If you die trying for something important then you have both honour and courage and that’s pretty good. I think that’s what the writer was saying, that you should hope for courage and try for honour and maybe even pray that the people telling you what to do have some too."

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Ashkan Honarvar







"depicts an undeniable, unavoidable beauty by accepting the darker sides of human 'nature'"
Check out the art of Ashkan Honarvar

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Dream Journal Entry #6 - James Franco

James Franco helped me drag my bags into his home. "Your room's straight down the hallway, to the left."

"Thanks."

I went on and took my jacket off, hung it on a hook behind my bedroom door and went back out to ask what was for lunch. 

James Franco was carrying a black shoulder sling bag, trying to roll giant pieces of colored paper into a cylinder. I guessed we weren't having lunch together. 

"I wanna do that for a living too," I half-joked, trying to fill the silence with some kind of something. 

James mumbled something under his breath.

"What'd you say?" I asked sweetly.

James just smiled at me, in a way that wasn't so much at me, more like, in spirit of me, with his eyes to the floor. I was getting really annoyed. He started struggling with his giant paper cylinders towards the door.

"Hey, don't just go. Tell me what you said."

"What?" he said, smiling at the floor again.

"You can't just mumble something under your breath every time and not share it," I was getting a bit snappy. 

James Franco dumped his rolled pieces of colored paper on the floor, along with his bag. He started punching walls. These ones didn't hole. I was starting to get scared but didn't want him to see that. He was pacing now, breathing heavily as he started to turn red.

"Dipshit. Little dipshit," he mumbled again - I caught that one. 

"You're calling me a dipshit?"

He began to let out these caveman groans. Okay, so I should've kept quiet from here, but I didn't.

"How can I be living with someone who's just called me a dipshit? I haven't even been here 5 minutes and you already can't stand me." Of course he didn't see the relevance of the question.

"UUUHH DIPSHIT STIPSHIT!"

He paced quickly over to his beautiful L-shaped sofa, took a corner with one hand and threw it against the wall effortlessly. Every breath he took now he'd scream "STIPSHIT!" after.

"James, stop. Why don't you have any respect for me? Is it because I'm not holding my own yet?" Serious question at a seriously inappropriate time. 

At that he finally turned his gaze towards me. I didn't actually know if that was a great thing. His eyes were full of rage and I was shaking, but of course I didn't want him to see that. "STIPSHIT!" he screamed before heading over to me and pushing me against his giant work desk. I hit the table hard on impact, it shifted out of position. I fell onto the floor against it, and couldn't believe this was happening, again. I was officially terrified and helpless.

"James, please stop. Please," I begged. I started to cry.

He didn't stop. STIPSHIT STIPSHIT STIPSHIT! As he walked over to me I tucked my head into my knees and closed my eyes. He started kicking the right side of my body. Every kick almost broke my ribs. Or I swore he was going to.

I was crying, "James, don't. What're you doing?"

I was lying on my left now and he started kicking my head. His kick increased strength slowly, but surely, to the point I was sure my head was going to fly off. "You're going to kill me," I stammered between my breaths. 

I locked eyes with him for a brief moment hoping to have maybe made him realize, oh yeah, I should stop now, don't want to kill her. But no.

At that, James Franco crushed my skull. 

----

Felt my skull crush, woke up after of course. 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Anais Nin - The Moon

For women who are tied to the moon, love alone is not enough. We insist each day wrap it’s knuckles through our heart strings and pull. The lows. The joy. The poetry. We dance at the edge of a cliff, you have fallen off. So it goes. You will climb up again. 
You rare girl, once again, you have a body that belongs to no lover, to no father, belongs to no one but you. Wear your sorrow like the lines on your palm. Like a shawl to keep you warm at night. Don’t mourn the love that is lost to you now. It is a book of poems whose meters worked their way into your pulse. Even if it has slipped from your hands, it will stay in your body. 
You loved a man who treated you like absinthe, half poison and half god. He tried to sweeten you, to water you down. So you left. And now you have your heart all to yourself again. A heart like a stone cottage. Heart like a lover’s diary. Hope like an ocean. 
–  Letter from Anais Nin to Clementine Von  Radics 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Chuang Tzu

“The fish trap exists because of the fish. Once you’ve gotten the fish you can forget the trap. The rabbit snare exists because of the rabbit. Once you’ve gotten the rabbit, you can forget the snare. Words exist because of meaning. Once you’ve gotten the meaning, you can forget the words. Where can I find a man who has forgotten words so I can talk with him?”
– Chuang Tzu 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Dream Journal Entry #5 - White Figure

Note: Typing this I was more focused on keeping my brain in the same calm rhythms as it was the minute I woke up. I've compromised the usual descriptiveness as I was trying to get this all out before I forgot the main bits. It's a long one.

---------

I was seated on a hospital bed, tweeting about it. Something to do with my lungs. G tweeted back, asking how I was and I didn't reply. 

I got home just before sunset and he was already there. Orange hues from the sun filtering in through the giant windows of the living room, making shadows with the sheer white curtains and the pot plants. It was beautiful. He asked how I was, I shrugged and smiled, "fine." We spoke about things twitter related, one of them was a girl he flirts with on there - Lydia of the Shi (or something along those lines lol) and I listened politely.

He reached out to me and had me sit on the sofa beside him. "Deb I have feelings for you."

If I had food in my mouth I would've spat it out to the other side of the room.  "You're joking." 

"No, I'm not."

I sat there, really confused. He put his hand on my knee. I looked at him, "you decided that just now?" 

"No I realized it."

"How?"

"Minute I found out you've been going to hospital. I felt something - here," he gestured a fist to his chest comically. 

I leaned my head on his shoulder sighing, "what the hell."

He leaned back, lying length ways on the sofa, and gestured for me to lie in his arms, so I did. It was a comforting relief I felt, and a shock because who'd ever see that coming. I lay with him, my hand resting on his chest, looking into the distance. He didn't get pissed at my lack of reaction, he knew I was tired from hospital, shocked and taking it in. No explaining. 

I liked that about him.

We started talking about other things, and exchanging laughs. I started joking about Lydia of the Shi and he joked about this girl I was close to - Carmen. Was fun.

I reached to kiss the corner of his lips. He closed his eyes and grinned as I did it. As he opened his eyes he smiled at me, and asked me to do it again. I got up on my arm and leaned in, slowly this time. It was an extremely long kiss -  slow, sensual, and full of fire. 

We pulled away slowly, hooked deep into eachothers eyes, smiling. I leaned my arm over his shoulder as he lay, head on my hand, looking down at him, taking in his eyes, and that smile.

Fast forward to a new day.


I was back home again, but it was day. There was a huge family reunion. My dead grandpa was there, very much alive and healthy, and so was my uncle who never makes an appearance. I hung out with gramps the whole time. We talked sport, and he asked me about my life, butting in to agree with me, or disagree and enlighten me with his wisdom. 

My uncle came into the room asking if I wanted tea and coffee. "Both?" I asked.

"Yes, you have coffee after the tea. And I make the best blends. No 3-in-1s."

"This is interesting! Show me."

I gestured at gramps to come join me, but he cooly nodded up at me to go ahead and walked over to his towel, grabbed it, slipped out the room.

Tito mixed 3 kinds of leafy herbal mixtures. I sniffed out each of them. One was obviously mint, the other was some rose/berry mix - and the other I can't remember. He made a pot of it for me. It smelled divine.

"Drink that slowly and when you're done, I'll make your coffee for dessert."

"I didn't know you were into all this!" 

"Things reveal themselves at the right time." He winked at me and patted my back and was out the room. 

I followed after him sipping on my tea. The rest of the family positioned in the dining area. 

"Hey!!!" 

Shit.

It was Carmen, raising her hand up at me from the other side of the room. She hurried her way over to me, wrapping her arms around my waist pulling me in for a hug.

I was trying not to scald myself with the tea.

"Not so excited to see me?"

"Forgive me, I'm trying to avoid a second degree burn." 

She flicked her eyes over to the mug in my hand, "oh."

Carmen was so beautiful, so so beautiful; but a real kid drama queen. She demanded attention and she demanded it now. She likes conflict, a lot. Through the evening she started issues out of nothing, to which I sat there blankly staring at my family, smiling at whoever'd look at us.

That night she came into bed and we made out. She wanted more but I told her I was tired. She huffed at me and nagged at me but eventually she fell asleep.

Next morning I woke up and she wasn't next to me. I dragged myself out of bed looking for her around the house. 

Spotted. Coming out the kitchen with a tray full of breakfast and OJ. 

"Spiked. Just the way you like it" she pulls off domesticated well, although it doesn't have me fooled.

"You didn't have to."

"I knew you'd say that."

So at this point I was completely over the passive aggressiveness. In any case I smiled and was polite. "Thank you."

I went back to the living room to get my phone. On silent, 1 missed call, 2 texts. They were from G. One asking how I was, the next saying that he's just checking up on me, and to call back when I can. No pressure.

I liked that about him too. 

I brought the phone back to the dining room and texted him back:

Ah, I've got stories to tell you. Lets meet up again soon.

Carmen was still in her domesticated wife routine, "sweety, who're you texting?"

"G."

"Oh. How is he?" she's known I've liked him forever. She hated him because of that.

"He's great." 

I put the phone in my pocket and finished breakfast. 

Skip forward to the evening and I was coming home from work. 


The elevator was broken so I had to take the stairs to the 11th floor. Good exercise, I thought to myself. On my way up reaching the fourth floor there was a figure in the corner, just standing there. He was in a white cloak, a white mask that had a long nose, curving down, and a white cone shaped hat. 

I was trying to brush it off and act cool. I acknowledged it in my mind, was shit scared, but acted sif I didnt see a thing. Thought it could've been a prank. Or a hallucination. Continued walking up.

On every floor, the figure stood in the same corner. All up until the 11th, where I had to actually open the door right beside him to get out of the stairwell. 

I did my nightly routine, then headed to bed. Texting G as I was snug under the doona, I felt a presence in the room. Soon after, the same figure in the stairwell walked straight past my bed. He brushed so close to me his cape caressed my arm. 

I have no idea what dream me was thinking but dream me thought she was just so tired and stressed out she was hallucinating.

I sent G a e-kiss goodnight, and went to bed. 

Skip through to the evening of the following day. The elevator was working and when I got home, I didn't bother with the lights. It was a full moon and it shone beautifully through the giant windows. I placed my things on the sofa, took off my clothes, chucked them there too, and walked over to my bed, naked, taking nothing but my phone with me. Tiring day of work I think.

I got Skype up ready to chat to G. As soon as he replied, I heard the sound notification come out from somewhere distant. I thought again to myself, thought I must be hallucinating again. 

So I sent a lengthy chat msg, trying to fit one of the stories I had from work into a paragraph for G's amusement, hit send. He was typing a lengthy one, but when he finally sent it, I heard the sound notification again.

This time I finally figured I wasn't dreaming it. I got up with the bed's throw over wrapped around me - it was cold, and I was starting to admit to myself I was spooked. Carrying the phone in my hand, G must've been typing short messages, a joke, a question, maybe a "haha" because the notifications were chiming in, one after the other. Ah ha, the desktop in the study corner of the living room. 

What was it doing on? I thought to myself. I rarely use my desktop.

Someone tapped me on my shoulder. I turned around slowly, shaking, it was the white figure. He took off his mask and headpiece. 

He was a she, and she was Carmen.

"What the he-"

She smiled at me and pushed a knife through the throw over wrapped around me and into my stomach.

I dropped my phone and, collapsed on my knees. "What the hell."

---------

So anyway I died, and I figure she was pissed I was 1) talking to G and also the Skype convo that revealed 2) G and I were trying things out. 

That was honestly the longest most complex dream I've had or been able to remember since highschool. Amazing. I wish I dreamt like that every night. 


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Jeweled Gold

I have been waiting months for my soul to see the light of day once more. It has seen it, and things of the warmest hues of oranges and yellows, some rarer reflections bounce from jeweled gold; my greatest treasures. Words are not enough to articulate the gratitude I have to be given another chance at this.

There are some things that still wound my heart. A few of those things tucked deeply, in the darkest corners that I've not been able to shine light on. It is the human in me. Have we all not been broken, in one way or another? 

And there are some instances where I am still the porcelain doll I once remembered myself to be.  

I am vulnerable in these instances, and in these instances I do not see light. I am drowning in a darker shade of black waiting to devour me, should my will escape me.

And it wants to, but I resist.

When I rise, I am grateful once more. 

My heart holds an ocean of love, Divine truths, and torment. My mind knows better, 

my heart is at mercy. 

A flame to the black oil that sits buried.

May it stay buried forever.


I only wish to see the light of day. And if darkness may engulf me, may it be so in love; the truest form; the unattainable. And if it is unattainable may it make me strive, and grow, and awaken, forevermore. 

Gratitude, strength. The present, my virtue.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

S├ębastien Soldevila and Mimi Bonnavaud for Cirque Phenix

What is evil?

3:11AM

3 hours ago I was thinking how narrow minded the concept of evil is. What is evil isn't wise, or open-minded, or humble, or fair. It feeds it's strength from a false sense of pride. If you talk to evil and you've been surrounded by light, evil doesn't scare you - evil sounds like a brat. A bratty child.

I've tried to avoid the hour for the longest time.

Evil crowns itself King. Nothing is earned, everything is always given - for free.

This is starting to sound Disney. This has no affiliation to religion. Wut

"We are all searching for someone who's demons play well with ours" — who's heard that bull? I did, and totally believed it too, but screw that melodramatic excuse for abusive behaviour. Is a sadist and a masochist the perfect pair? And this is out of the bedroom, okay, folks? Please. The answer is no ffs. Neither should be paired in the first place.

Demons - our personal demons - they're ours, and they're not for someone else to play with ffs. They are our darkness; and I haven't gotten to know a single person without their own darkness. Who the fuck threw 'demons' in the mix? This is the kind of shit that makes the crazy person crazier.

So evil, darkness, wickedness — call it whatever, but it's overrated, okay?

And if you spoke to me before I wouldn't be saying any of this. But evil is vain. Evil is a fucking narcissist. Evil pays attention to itself, and no one else; everything for the benefit of one, vs. the majority. And fuck me for saying this: are we not the same as our neighbour? 

He is only intelligent to himself. He is the vengeful victim of circumstance, the sore loser, the bitter lover, the spoiled brat. Evil is the corruption, the greed, the adults in diapers, the weakest link. 

Evil isn't evil. Evil's a sensationalised, romanticed, waste of space and time.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

After A While — Veronica Shoffstall

After A While 
©1971 Veronica A. Shoffstall

After a while you learn
the subtle difference between
holding a hand and chaining a soul.

And you learn
that love doesn't mean leaning,
and company doesn't always mean security.

And you begin to learn
that kisses aren't contracts,
and presents aren't promises.

And you begin to accept your defeats
with your head up and your eyes ahead
with the grace of woman,
not the grief of a child.

And you learn
to build all your roads on today,
because tomorrow's ground is
too uncertain for plans
and futures have a way of falling down
in mid-flight.

After a while you learn
that even sunshine burns
if you get too much.

So you plant your own garden,
and decorate your own soul,
instead of waiting for someone
to bring you flowers.

And you learn that you really can endure,
you really are strong,
you really do have worth.
And you learn, and you learn.
with every goodbye, you learn.

Dream Journal Entry #4 - Bye bye, Kirsty

She was a head taller than I, with overly large eyes (to be fair, they were a beautiful shade of ice blue) and a gawky nose that angled out of her head with real purpose, but then kind of curved back in to stabilise. Her lips were thin, and mostly pursed; stiff upper lip would be an understatement. She had dirty blonde hair, parted right in the middle, and a really bad attitude.

"You're so ugly," she said to me. I was definitely used to it; I didn't say anything and just looked at her,  deadpan. She groaned, pissed at my lack of reaction, "that's why you have no friends." She bumped shoulders with me as she passed; the scent of her stale, over used jumper leaving her final hurrah. In my face.

I held my breath for half a minute, trying not to make it obvious, god forbid she sees me do it and she opens her gaping mouth at me again. 

Suddenly, warm, familiar lips kiss my cheek. She's always doing that. "Someone's seen a ghost!" Hannah laughs as she playfully pokes my nose. 

"No, it was just Kirsty," I shrug and smile at her.

"Oh not again," she pulls me in for a warm hug.

Hannah is my girlfriend. I was entranced the moment I met her. She has a natural glow about her, tanned, and never wears make-up, deep green eyes, dark blonde, wavy hair - like an ocean girl - and beautifully pouted lips. Her two front teeth are slightly curved in, and she hates it, but I love it. Makes this beautiful bombshell of a girl, really cute too.

She makes her rabbit face at me as she pulls away from the embrace. I laugh, biting her shoulder and slapping her butt. She's good news to me, Hannah is.

So Kirsty comes back, passing between us, knocking both our shoulders.

"OI!" Hannah screams, as her backhand shoots up in the air. "Do you not have anything better to do!? There's seven metres between us and the next wall, dya have to walk through us like that?"

"Oh, sorry, I didn't see ya," Kirsty shrugs, grinning like a bitch.

Hannah flares up real quick. It's one of the things I like about her. Not that she angers; but just how passionate she is about certain things. One of them is protecting me.

I quietly mumble in Hannah's ear, gently pushing my nose through her gorgeous hair to her neck, while whispering, "calm, Bunny. She's not worth it."

She tilts her head to the side, and swings her hair round to expose her neck to me. I know her eyes are closed. I plant little kisses to her jaw and back to her shoulder, biting lightly at the flesh of her neck.

Suddenly, the raven caws. And caws and caws. "Get a damn room! Oh it hurts my eyes! Ugly and uglier! Oh I'm going to be sick!" She begins acting out her scene; and for best villain pretends to spew,  the Oscar goes to... 

We walk away. Far away. Hannah and I didn't speak a word the entire way. Kirsty was something we'd been dealing with for a long time, and it gets old and annoying. 

Hannah stops walking, and sits her butt on the pavement. She wraps her arms around one of my legs, playfully groaning, while batting her lashes up at me, "can we kill her?" 

She tugs at my skirt. 

"Please? I'm serious."

I look around, then off into the distance.

"Okay."

---

And then I woke up.

I love this sort of dream because I was playing someone completely opposite to me. Well in some ways, I think I have mellowed out a lot like dream-me, but what was more interesting was the character, Hannah. She's exactly my personality when I am with my closest, minus the OI and the backhand. It was just interesting to see how it feels, from the other side.

Some days I do wish that fire'd come out when I get into some social situations, but it's mostly best to walk away I figure. I dunno.

Poor Kirsty.

---

Edit: 

I should've mentioned too that all that back story in between the dialogue - that's exactly what it felt like in the dream. It's crazy how the most unfamiliar things become familiar in your head.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Fugu

How do they make it so cute!? Great one by Arthur Philippe.


You can't escape your fate, my dear fishy friend.

On wealth and substance

Sitting in bed about ready to conk out. This post has been on my mind the entire day.

Did not attempt to start writing it for fear of underwhelming myself. Motivations today were almost non-existent, save the salad I made for lunch and the walk I had in the evening.

We all have these days, I tell myself.

In any case, I've been thinking a lot about the authentic self. Mostly because I've been in situations recently where the authentic self does not exist. Whatever you think about commercialism and media effects, triple that and add a cherry on top.

Which is something I am completely not used to as I have always aimed to express my truest self. Also more commonly identified as my being impulsive. Which has, I won't lie, gotten me into conflict in my past, but it's also managed to filter out the bullshit. Which I've not-so-conveniently managed to find ways to deal with, no thanks to the past two years of bullshit. Not so impulsive anymore. Still my truest self, minus the damage.

I relapse sometimes.

Anyway.

Situations I get into where it's about being the better man - not the bigger one, as is usually the case - who can afford what, etc. it's even down to who knows the richer, whiter (hi colonization), better looking set of people. Which is generally what I've always noticed about the wealthier people here - they're assholes. And to be completely real here, idgaf about any of it. 

If you rolled up to my place in a black Hummer, I don't care how much I love Hummers and want one for myself, I'm judging you the minute you open your mouth. The coolness of the car solely reflecting on the shit that comes out of there, plus your values, integrity, etc.

Who's heard of that?

Which is a bummer for some cos I figure, if you've been this way your whole life - who else are you other than the one who seeks to impress? Unravelling flesh with no soul; Wealth in money should come paired with wealth in substance, presence of mind, a sense of humanity and humility - or at least one of them, IMO. 

But it obviously doesn't work that way duh.

Apparently the only other country to have their culture so based around the class system is India. Maybe China? Asia-wise, anyway. Then there's the comparison of other countries that have their social systems centred round the catholic religion. Which is true, too, and easy to spot why given the history of the Catholic Church and all that drama.

We're all different, hey? I just gotta keep my head out of the clouds, and completely root myself in our Mother Earth. But who knows, I might be the fakest bitch you'll ever know in 10 years.

Though I highly doubt that.


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Spoiler Alert; My little tribute to Captain Phillips


I underestimated Phillips (Hanks) at the start of the film. Captain of a cargo ship, they portrayed him as the average Joe, the family man, who isn't all that charming, charismatic, or witty, and is stuck doing something he isn't particularly fond of. A grizzly, grey man who has gone through enough of the same monotony and has clearly accepted that.

You slowly begin to warm up to his character as he's underestimated by his second in hand and the rest of the crew. Initial concerns rise as he leads his ship through waters highly populated with pirate activities; a warning email sets him off to go through defensive drills.

I was impressed by Hanks' character development; the quick wit and stealthy cleverness that he executes in humble desperation. He definitely does not fit the regular hero mold, but you begin to see that he might just surpass that in his quick decision making and the strength he finds in his weakness, and his kindness.

The pace was perfect; just the right amount of fast and slow. Slower at the details, faster when necessary. As for the acting, I can't even begin to describe how well the cast worked together, and how authentically real, and sensitive they all were towards the tribute. Vulnerable, sublime acting.

A question of power. Four armed men and one unarmed hostage; what defines power? Who was really helpless here? Politically, philosophically, this film deals with so many themes to discuss. I found a brilliant writer at the Film School Rejects website who explains it more eloquently than I ever could: click click

I was traumatized after watching Hanks' trauma at the final scene. If I could stop time and space just to fully immerse myself mind, body and soul in his acting, I would. The tear ducts are at it still just thinking about it.

Stellar acting, brilliant directing and a great story. Definitely one for the watching, and the best movie I've seen all year.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Dream Journal Entry #3 - The Bear

K and I hid in the female bathroom, but that wasn't enough. Douche followed us in. At the sight of that we hurriedly locked ourselves in a cubicle.

"Hey! Open up!" 

We kept quiet and still. Best approach when dealing with a bear, apparently. 

"I'm not joking. Open up!"

Our cubicle door started taking some punches. K was trying his best not to laugh and I had the big eyes on, with a finger across my lips. 

"What the hell are you two doing in there!?"

Our cubicle door could officially pass as a battered wife. K pressed his body against it in hopes it'd stay up. I couldn't stop smiling my face began to ache.

"Leave us alone mate," K demands, rolling his eyes. He made a wide-eyed, pouty gesture with his lips at me. I laughed.

At that, Douche calmed. I grabbed K's hand, gesturing to stay quiet and wait. K saluted. We were standing there in silence with grins on our face, counting tiles on the floor. 

Suddenly, something fell on my head, something heavy; the same kind of feeling you get when a basketball lands on you from a half-court away.

"She's still mine!" Douche exclaimed. The bastard had managed to climb the throne in the cubicle next to ours, and plant a wet one on my head. At that, K grabbed my hand and we bolted out the cubicle, out the bathroom, down the hallway and ran for the car park. 

K's older brother was waiting outside with the car. Slipping in through the windows like we used to, we were off. "Imagine if we..." and at that, our car fell off a cliff edge and landed upside down, half submerged in a lake and half on the rocky shores.

Doesn't pay to be a cynic in your own dream. 

My hands got caught outside the window for some reason and bent all the way forward, pressed against the car and the rocks. Could really feel that. "You're lucky your wrists are so flexible, kiddo." K slipped to the back seat next to me and unbuckled my seatbelt.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Dream Journal Entry #2 - Safest place on Earth

In an A-Grade, tired asylum, the room had walls 3-storeys tall, mostly painted with outlines of sweat, mold, rain and whatever else. There were rough, elevated platforms along the sides of the room, maybe 5 meters high, and in the middle, a rickety wooden stage, maybe 3 meters high. 

I was in the middle being persecuted by the Chinese Mafia. I'm not too sure what I was being persecuted for, but in came my two old pals J and K.

J ran, jumped and did some 360 twist over the stage before grabbing me and putting me on his back. We were out of there in two seconds, and into the next room which had a basketball court, and a whole load of ramps to skate and shoot on.

K comes in, "someone's taken my job!" he teases. I get off J and hop onto Ks back and he takes me for a run. We're going real fast, defying gravity off walls and ceilings. I tell him, "this is the safest place I've ever known." 

True.

He turns to me to acknowledge my comment, and smiles.

Alarm, Moo-hyun Jang

Fantastic short animated film about waking up.
I especially relate to the bit at 2:30

 Alarm by Moo-hyun Jang

   

 Executive status. I love it.

Friday, October 11, 2013

On cigarettes, floods, and pretentiousness

Coffee and a cigarette.

And these are Hope cigarettes. A dollar a pack, but so yum, especially if you're doing menthols. Apparently, these are what the carpenters smoke here; and everyone looks at you funny when you swing them out and you don't fit the mould. The grins on the cashier's faces when they double-take on what you just ordered. 

I don't know if I'm taking it too seriously but hello class-system.

Which is also apparent when it starts flooding here and while there are people dying from landslides, the other half of the population is whining about their cancelled plans at the mall or what have you. 

And the trend on the comments floating about speak of resilience and the weatherproof Filipino spirit. Is that really what it is? 

It flooded last night. It wasn't too bad on my street. Waters were about knee-high, and quickly subsided soon after the rain stopped. Everyone was handling it so casually. I stuck my head out the window and could hear people laughing, screaming, like they were at an amusement park.

Yan ang Pinoy. Sa dami ng problema, nakuha mo pang ngumiti - ika nga ni Bamboo!

Point being, I don't know if this is something to brag about. 

The TV was on and deaths were being counted, while I was reading on cancelled weekend plans of the "social elite". I began reflecting on what would be done in other countries I've lived in, because collectively, the thing I have going in my head would be the same for the majority, and things would be addressed. Generally speaking, an unhappy majority should equal change.

We're not talking about a raise, more holidays, or women's liberation here. It's the bloody drainage system. 

I said, "why not the get everyone to drop what they're doing and we each get a bit of the drainage system to work on!" - I thought that was pretty smart.

But apparently they're so used to the flooding here, it's become a part of daily routine. In some places, houses stock giant slabs of hollow concrete to elevate all their kitchen appliances when the waters start to rise. To which you could say, wow that's so clever! but it's unsettling. An issue shouldn't be manageable.  It's like an abusive relationship. We shouldn't be saying, "oh it's okay. We're ready for you! Come stay the night!" instead can somebody please be telling the the whole thing to fuck off!

Maybe they're right. Maybe help isn't just around the corner and if you raise your fist to the system, no one gives a damn. 10 billion pesos being spent on mansions, parties and cars, from the hard earned tax money of those who don't have that kind of money to spend. Seriously? This shouldn't have to go on. I want to vomit.

To the lavish and aspiring lavish I say: 

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines pretentious as:
Having or showing the unpleasant quality of people who want to be regarded as more impressive, successful, or important than they really are. 

Where are all the people with their feet on the ground?

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Matthew Cornwall


Genesis (2009)
oil on wood
28" x 39"


Reverie (2007)
oil on wood
8" x 8"


Nantucket Shore (2013)
oil on wood
8" x 11"

Check out the art of Matthew Cornwall 

Dream Journal Entry #1 - Kneel

It wasn't the usual characters in my dream last night. 

The ex dude made a cameo, but he was loitering in the background with some of his bromances. I on the other hand, was setting up tables with my first crush in grade school. We're close friends in the dream. So in the process of chit chat and table setting, a blonde dude, who I'm pretty sure went by the name of Steven (also went to my grade school) came by and sat on the chair just by me.

He held onto my free hand, rubbing my fingers. Looking up at me, he tugged lightly before softly speaking, "I'm so sorry. Give me another chance. I won't take it for granted."

"I've heard that one before," I shrugged.

"I'm not like the one before. I didn't mean to."

I let go of the fork I was about to set in place and turned all my attention to Steve. I locked eyes with his, slipping between his thighs, kneeling on the floor. He leaned over, pressing his forehead on mine as he ran his fingers through my hair, grabbing a little as he closed his eyes.

I put my hands on his neck to warm him, rubbing slightly just below his ears and whispered, "I'm not falling for this shit again, you understand?"

Steve opened his eyes and smiled slightly before stealing a kiss. I kissed back, then stood up and continued plating.

***
Well, I still don't know what Steve did.

You know the thing about dreams; they say that it's the brain's way of coping with the stresses of the day. Its way of making sense of all the shit that doesn't make any sense. In any case, I'm not even gonna delve into this one. Pretty self explanatory. But I'm pretty happy with my progress - with or without the dramatic romances.