Monday, February 23, 2009

Love for "Big Love"

I think this is the best season of "Big Love" ever. Not that it was bad before, but it's been just incredible the past few weeks. How often does a show improve in its maturity?

After Oscar, redux

Nothing, absolutely nothing to say about the Oscars. I watched the way I like to most - with a room full of friends, good food, and a few drinks. I didn't have to pay too much attention to the show (which can bore me) without some commentary from friends.

I took today off because I know from experience I'll be exhausted. Not just from the late night, but from all the work cooking and cleaning. Yesterday I was on the move from the moment I woke up to the moment I crawled into bed. (I put away all the food, took a bag of trash and two of empty bottles downstairs, loaded the dishwasher, and filled the sink to soak another pile of dishes first.) Actually, Saturday was much the same - except for an hour break in the pedicure chair, I was dashing from one store to another, up and down the stairs into my apartment, most of the day.

It's sunny today and I'm slightly hungover and just want to curl up on the couch and snooze.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

History of Oscar

Two years ago I tried to have an Oscar party and tried to control the number of attendees to fit into my old apartment's smaller living room. But as the night approached, guests who were tentative became solidly "no." Snow appeared in the forecast, and others ran for the hills. On the night in question, one simply didn't show, and I was left alone with one couple.

Last year I'd just moved into this place, and I cleared enough room around the boxes for two of us to sit and watch.

This year I invited more, imagining the number would naturally dwindle to an optimal one, but as of today (the day before), I have 14 people coming. It will be crowded, but it might work. I made 12 silly little gift bags (when the count was at 11) and feel like I am obligated to make more, but in my heart I know I won't need them. I know somebody is going to cancel or just not show up, but I don't know who.

I plan events for a living, you'd think that I'd have this down by now.

Today the plan is to finish shopping for food items and do the bulk of my cleaning. Tomorrow, to cook.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

one year ago

I was painting my new apartment by day and trudging home to the old one by night. I am so glad it's over and I'm here. So glad.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

So shoe me

Last night I attended an event at an upscale department store's high-end shoe department. Ostensibly an opportunity to hear from a woman consultant on career development, it really was an opportunity for said department store to corral several hundred women in a room, feed them wine and cheese, and offer them 15% off designer shoes for that night only. Not that anyone cared about the presentation. They were all there for the shoes. Hell, the presenter herself was just there for the shoes.

I don't usually think of myself as being that different from my co-workers, but last night I felt it. I watched as two women (who theoretically make the same or less than I do) tried on $500 and $800 pairs of shoes. One mentioned how her mother would sometimes give her pairs of that same designer's shoes when she grew tired of them, and I thought of how my mother (and all of her sisters) have probably never owned a stiletto heel, nor had an occasion to wear one.

(One co-worker, in her 20's, teetering in a pair of 4 inch black patent leather heels, kept asking, "Wouldn't these look great with a pair of skinny jeans for going out?" as if a) the phrase "skinny jeans" has ever crossed my lips (other than a reference to the size 12's in the bottom dresser drawer with the zipper that just won't close til I lose another 5 lbs), and b) I go to any place where I could get away with wearing those and not look like a hooker.)

Sunday, February 15, 2009

So many films, so little time

I have to confront the fact that I will not see all of the Oscar nominated movies. I have seen just about all of those nominated in the major categories, with one glaring exception, and today I'm throwing in the towel, because I just can't sit through it. I am referring to, of course, "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" which suffers in my view from being both 1)excruciatingly tedious-looking and 2) two hours and 48 minutes long. You see, I could possibly cajole myself into going if it were only 90 minutes of my life, maybe even 115. But, no.

(Still have a week so my plans might change, but for now, that's it.)

Instead today I will go see "Waltz with Bashir."

I have not been dumping on you here with my movie thoughts in awhile, but not sure it's in anyone's best interests to spend too much time catching up. My fingers are tired and I've likely lost any slim audience I had. But some quick hits:

Frost/Nixon: Much better than I'd anticipated, with just as much suspense built around whether Frost will get funding for his "project" and whether he was killing his career than whether he can get Nixon to say something important. There were even parts were I laughed out loud. Frank Langella is fantastic.

The Class: My friend and I both walked out shaking our heads. Note that it's a really good film, just not, in either of our estimation, the best film of the year (which various critics have deemed it.) A case of too much hype? Possibly.

The Reader
: This fell on the "better than I thought" side, although I struggled with loving Kate Winslet's performance because of the bad makeup they put her in for the elderly scenes. She's good though, and her scenes with the actor playing the young Ralph Fiennes are very good. (Side note: Am I the only one who wants to write "Rafe"?)

: Felt very much like a staged play, with long location-constrained scenes, which most people balk at in movies, but I like. The storyline is less interesting than the acting (almost all of the key action happens off-stage, er, off-screen, but you get to see and hear the characters' reaction to it.) I have a long-standing, extremely petty issue with Phillip Seymour Hoffman which I can't go into here, but I don't think he did anything better than he did in "The Savages" last year and leave it at that. Meryl Streep, though, can do almost ("Mama Mia") no wrong.

The Wrestler: Wow, I really am behind in writing about films. Anyhow, this was a so-so movie buoyed by a strong performance. Marisa Tomei rules! Ha, no, of course, I mean buoyed by two strong performances. (Yes, two. Sorry, Evan Rachel Wood.) We'll see if Mickey Rourke's comeback is real when he plays someone not so close to himself. (And I'll never pick up a staple gun again.)

Revolutionary Road
: This film had the feeling of a staged play, but not to its advantage. Too much talk and confrontation, which dragged the film down, even lower than its hopeless depressing tone. I liked Kate Winslet, though I'd agree with the Academy and reward her for "The Reader" over this.

I think there might have been some movies I saw in December I haven't included, but that will have to be it, as this is long and you're bored, and I'm not dragging out my 2008 calendar to see what I saw when.

Now I have to go chase the moaning pigeons off my windowsill and weigh myself with Wii Fit.
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