Les Mis stuff

Wed, May. 5th, 2004 08:40 pm
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Found Les Mis at work and borrowed it to listen to (somehow, very long musicals are less annoying to listen to over an eight hour workday than lots and lots of CDs on iPod). I used to absolutely adore it to pieces (still like it, just... not that fanatically), but I haven't heard it in a good few years or so, since my Les Mis CD started skipping.

Ah, so many things are the same -- Cosette still annoys me. I still can't help but roll my eyes at the love at first sight bit and the entire trilling through "A Heart Full of Love." Apparently, I was a cynic about romance pretty early on. Romeo and Juliet annoyed me for the same reason. I think I tried to make everything make sense then, so I completely did not understand how someone could just set eyes on another person and know it's love. For that matter, I still don't think it happens really. Plus, I felt sorry for Eponine (unrequited love, ah, high school. Hee). I think everyone does though, but back then I thought I was being rebellious or something, not liking the heroine ;). It's just, Cosette has no agency at all. She sits there with the Thenardiers and is abused and in general engenders pity in the audience, and then she's rescued by Valjean and raised as a completely sheltered princess. I'm supposed to feel sorry for her because she had a rotten childhood, and I do, but it doesn't make her a very interesting character. Valjean protects her by telling her nothing, as does Marius later, because she's the princess in the ivory tower (mixing metaphors...) who can't be sullied by the real world or something. And I think it makes psychological sense on Valjean's part, but again, it doesn't make her a very interesting character to watch.

Marius also gets points off for doing that love at first sight thing. Plus, I have inherent dislike for the "meant to be" couple in a love triangle. And I remember teenaged me rolling my eyes over his bits in "Red and Black" -- who needs love when there's an exciting, idealistic revolution going on! Now that I think about it, I think I was a great fan of exciting, idealistic revolutions as a kid.

I'm actually not that interested in Valjean either, but I very much like Javert (especially Terrance Mann's voice). I think part of that is the fascination with idealism and justice. I was very adamant (and still am) that things be Fair and Just and with questions of ends justifying means (for a while I was for it) and being annoyed at the emotional heroes who are always willing to let the world go to hell because an innocent is suffering. Not that I am actually all for killing the innocent, obviously, but one sees so many heroic stands like that in fiction, that people who are starkly idealistic to the point in which the end does justify the means are very interesting in contrast. We can now see where my fascination with Wesley stems from. I just thought today that Javert is the opposite of Enjolras -- they've both got this very hard set ideology and aren't very willing to let anything get in the way of it. Ruthlessly idealistic people are interesting. So are ruthlessly grey people like the Thenardiers and Eponine (who now sort of reminds me of Spike).

I think in fiction the heroes are too often singled out so that even when they make the tough decisions, you know they will somehow resolve it, like Buffy in the Gift. ME gets many more kudos though for portraying the psychological damage of having to make those decisions. Sometimes the good people in fiction seem to preternaturally know they are Good and that everything will be ok, and that makes them less interesting. It's like Harrison Ford in Air Force One not taking the escape capsule because he thinks he can single-handedly defeat the terrorists. Admirable love for his family, but extremely impractical, imho. I also used to be (and still am to a lesser degree) absolutely fascinated with the conflicts between being a leader/king/queen of people and being a person (much like Buffy's Slayer/California girl complex) and because all the narratives I watched or read had heroes that would privilege the personal above the ideal (loooots of action movies here, thanks to my dad), I always fell firmly on the side of responsibility to the greater good instead of the personal. I think this is why I got to like Faris so much in A College of Magics.

Also listened to Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (stop laughing at me! I went through this huge Andrew Lloyd Weber phase in middle school) for the first time in forever. Like Les Mis, many things haven't changed... still fascinated with fan renderings of the Bible or addendums to the "canonical" stories I know (which is why the Gnostic Gospels and Kabbalism interests me). I still think Joseph was rather spoiled and it wasn't very nice of him to rub his brothers' noses in it. And I still feel sort of sorry for his brothers, who often feel like they are programmed to be mean and jealous.

I also used to be able to sing all the colors from memory in the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (It was red and yellow and blah and blah), but sadly, I have lost that ability.
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I found a Buffy soundtrack album in the store today (unfortunately, not OMWF), and ended up getting it because I liked the songs. The B/A theme song is on there, and to my amusement, after the first two phrases, I expect to hear the sound of glass breaking, followed by "A little sexual frustration" ala Strange Disease. I think this is probably going to be one of those connections wired in my brain that will make rewatching S2 very interesting.

I did the same thing to myself with No Doubt's Tragic Kingdom -- I think I had it in the computer on repeat perpetually for a long time when I was in my X-Files fanfiction craze. So now whenever I hear any song from that album, I immediately start thinking of dark paranoia and colonization and Scully and Mulder and Madeleine Partous' Shadow Puppets. It's very strange.

Meredith Brooks' Blurring the Edges is associated with surfing the internet looking for HTML tips.

Me First's Blow in the Wind is now associated with a rainy day in San Francisco and the sci-fi/fantasy bookstore there, because I think I had it on repeat in the car while we were driving there.
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Miscellania

Mon, Apr. 19th, 2004 10:13 pm
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I am a Livejournal maniac today! Actually, I'm just bored because the boy is doing homework instead of watching It Happened One Night with me. So I sadly click every five seconds to see if anyone on my FL has posted.

Anyhow. I can make my rats dance! They follow me around on the couch, and apparently they will follow my finger around too. So I held my fingers above their heads and moved it left and right to the beat, and my rats would stand on their hind feet and swivel their heads to and fro. It's the funniest thing ever. I have to get batteries for my camera so I can tape it or something.

Listening to my iPod at work, I was quite amused by the fact that Herr Someone in the revival version of Cabaret is originally played by Ron Rifkin. That's right, go listen to Crazy Uncle Alvin sing about pineapples!

I updated my User Info (about time). Sometime I am going to have to go through my memories and reorganize them (LJ, not the ones in my head). I have too many entries in the Books section -- should split by genre. I want a handy little linkbar next to my entries in my LJ, but I like my layout right now. Hrm. Plus, wrestling with HTML is kind of frustrating.

---

(later) I think It Happened One Night was funny, but I didn't like it in the end because the heroine was a complete idiot.

I also completely disregarded the numbers on the bathroom scale (I will pretend it is broken, lalala) and gorged on strawberries and Cool Whip and salt and vinegar chips (best kind! love the kick when you inhale the vinegar) and leftover Easter candy. Really disgusting ^_^. Isn't it great?

First time I had Cool Whip! It has to be put in the freezer, weird! It has a weird springy texture before it melts. I am amused by processed American food (Cheez Whiz!).

Yay!

Thu, Apr. 1st, 2004 06:35 pm
oyceter: Delirium from Sandman with caption "That and the burning baby fish swimming all round your head" (delirium)
Wandered into Tower Records on a whim (they're just a parking lot away from my apartment), and found Ryan Adams' Love Is Hell Pt. 1 for 6 bucks (debated on Pt. 2, then figured I'd see if I liked this one first), New Pornographers' Mass Romantic (which I completely blame on [livejournal.com profile] anodyna) and Dirty Dancing (also six bucks).

Hey, I want Dirty Dancing. It's one of those movies I can watch forever.

Yay!! Usually they never have what I'm looking for in the used section.

I adore the latest LJ trend of posting mp3s -- found some really cool stuff that way.
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Mon, Sep. 29th, 2003 07:52 pm
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So. I spent all day at work listening to two Del Amitri songs because the band's really got itself stuck in my head now. I should probably get Hatful of Rain at some point too. Anyhow, so now I'm desperately tempted to make vids -- a Xander/Anya vid to Tell Her This and a S6 Spike/Buffy vid to The First Rule of Love. Except I don't have Premiere. I have no clue how to make a vid. And... have not seen enough Xander/Anya episodes! But will stew on this for a while and maybe even plot out schematics.

Weird or interesting books I ran across the past few days:
Twincheeks, a book photographing people's butts
Draw a Skinny Elephant, Shel Silverstein (looked fun)
How to Make Miniature Furniture
a sex manual, a book on Japanese shunga (the erotic woodblock prints) and a book on erotic Eastern art -- I think it's funny that I'm flipping through these at work, ogling at sizes and positions, to check for damage to the book.

Many others I can't remember... I need to keep a list.

Currently reading: Patricia Gaffney's To Have and to Hold, because I thought I needed a nice, happy romance novel after the complete angst and scariness and emotional wringer that was Otherland. I picked the wrong book. It reads like fanfiction, in the best possible way -- the hero and the heroine aren't conventional by any means, both are deeply scarred, and the beginning of their relationship is absolutely disastrous and ugly, like S6 Spuffy. But it's so good! I must read more of this author, because angsty romance with a truly unlikeable hero and a scarred heroine whose "I don't like sex" attitude is much less of a plot device and stupidity than most romances feel like (*cough*ElizabethLowell*cough*).

This is why I read fanfic. The good stuff can have an edge that a lot of mainstream romances can't because of the expectations of the marketplace. Granted, bad fanfic is pure dreck, but the good stuff (once again, I shout out to Hard Candy) can show relationships that aren't fluffy and happy and sex that isn't the norm for romances.

It's also getting cold here =(. I'm sure all you people on the East Coast will laugh at what I think of as cold, but it's not comfy to sit outside and eat anymore, sigh. I want to feel the sun beating on me again...
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So randomly downloading songs on Kazaa, I find there's this band called Me First and the Gimme Gimmes and they do punk covers of oldies and showtunes and the like. They're absolutely hilarious! It's just loud and bouncy with guitar riffs and lyrics I already know... kind of like the Ramones' My Way in Lovers Walk. This is awesome.
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Spamming the LJ!

Thu, Mar. 13th, 2003 01:42 am
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And in the course of studying (kind of) for tomorrow's midterm, I have discovered there is an entire branch of Celtic/Irish/Scottish rock music. God bless Amazon and their recommendations list. So I am now listening to the Pogues and have also downloaded a little Scottish rock, the Real McKenzies. They play bagpipes. They are automatically cool.

Irish rock is very cool. Everyone should go buy Flogging Molly too. Just because they're called Flogging Molly. And they're so fun in concert, even though your clothes reek of smoke and who knows what else later. They had a very cool concert, although it was kind of strange because I've never done the whole punk thing before. What is punk exactly? I'm confused. I know the Sex Pistols and Sid Vicious are supposed to be very punk, right? But what is it? I keep reading that it's very nihilistic, very fuck off everyone type music, but people also keep calling Flogging Molly and Irish punk band and they don't really feel like that.

*confused*

Will ponder punk, Irish music and cell phones.
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Whee!

Mon, Feb. 24th, 2003 07:53 pm
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Yay! The boy got me the Chicago the movie soundtrack! I am so happy! This movie makes me so happy on a very basic level. Despite the cynicism? Because of it? I have no idea. Anyway, I love love love love love the movie. I watched it three times in about a week. Before it was even released everywhere. Hee.

Musicals make me happy. Especially awesome ones like Chicago! Please Hollywood, make more! Especially if it's got Richard Gere. Especially especially if it's got Richard Gere just loving the fact that he's in a musical. Or Catherine Zeta-Jones is good too.

Now I will annoy the boy's entire room by singing at the top of my lungs. Yay!!!

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