Movies, Part II
Part II, because Part I is missing.
Part I happened a week ago, when Christine and I got together to have dinner and watch a film. It's a nice change of pace for me (something that I feel bad about regarding Mike. Going out with Christine is like a change of pace for me. She's my social outlet. Mike really doesn't have that right now and I wish that he did. Have a chum or two to hang out with. Someone other than me. Then again, Mike doesn't have the same social need and drive that I have. He doesn't need as much interaction as I do, but he still needs them just the same. I just need to find a gang like Tori and Jim (yes, that is his site! Check it out! It's wonderful) back in Illinois.
We watched Being John Malkovitch, which was a delightfully quirky and funny film. I was in shock when I figured out that the main character's wife was Cameron Diaz: she looked so un-Cameron Diaz. We wanted to exchange gifts but I completely forgot to bring it and she accidentally brought her mother's gift and not mine. So, we planned on getting together today to exchange gifts, have dinner, and watch another movie.
She was interested in seeing the Green Mile and I was hesitant because I really wanted to see that film with Mike instead. Plus, after talking to Jim for a while online, he reminded me that it was a long film (3+ hours) and I thought it would be unsuitable for me, who wants to get home at a reasonable hour. So, we went through a list of possibilities and opted to watch American Beauty. Christine hadn't seen it yet and I wouldn't mind seeing it again, so we went. We saw the film first, then hopped over to Ollies, Ollies, Ollies in Times Square for chinese dinner afterwards.
I got Christine three books for Christmas. She's been reading books recently, many of them "favorites" of mine, including William Gibson's Neuromancer. I find that really surprising, because I never thought that she would be into that kind of material. So, I thought I might indulge her with some books that have been on my mind recently. I got her Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein. I read it around the same time that I read Neuromancer and I can't exactly say that it "shaped" me as a person, but it gave me a different view of life and the world. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden was a really great read and it influenced me to explore other pieces of writing and design. It shaped my sense of aesthetics. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone was a really fun book to read and I'm sure she would gobble up the story.
She got me three things. Well, she got me two definite things and the third thing is a joint gift for Mike and me. She got me glitter soap and glitter antibacterial hand stuff from Bath and Body Works. It smells wonderful! Jungle berry. The hand stuff leaves glitter traces all over them. The third item is Latin Can Be Fun [Facetiae latinae], a "modern conversational guide". Mike thought it was really funny. It's essentially a latin phrasebook. I think it's great!
Haec via quo fert?
(Where does this road lead?)
A few weeks ago, my father took some photographs of me with the intent that I would make Christmas cards this year. Unfortunately, with my regimen of cutting my waking hours short for my health (must sleep.. must sleep) and with all the stuff at work going on, I don't have time to do it. I'm disappointed that I didn't really make the time necessary for the exercise, but things like that happen. It just makes me all the more determined to do it next year.
Here's one of the pictures that he took. Some of them have Mike and I in "American Gothic" pose with a rake. Some of them look downright silly. Especially since it was just bright enough for my color-sensitive lenses to change. I like the fact that it makes being outdoors easier for me and my eyes (I've found that they have been getting more light-sensitive as I've gotten older), but they make me look weird.
Tempora mutantus, nos et mutamur in illis.
(Times change, and we change with them.)
I had a strange dream last night, my medicated nocturnal woolgatherings.
I rented Brassed Off, a comedy flick starring Ewan MacGregor as a musician. It's a five day rental, so it's due on Sunday. Although I know I won't have time until the weekend to see it, it's nice to have it in my possession and will watch it at my leisure. Last night I dreamed about him.
He was kind of short in my dream, but I think that's so I won't hurt my dream-state neck looking up at him. We were both in marching band and we stood next to each other in the (insert word here that I've forgotten. There is a term for the line created by a marching band where all the members are side by side in one long line, shoulder to shoulder. Then the entire band takes one step forward together. That action and that state of a marching band has a specific term, but I've forgotten what it was. It's been seven years since I've spoken the word). He held up a mellophone or a similar instrument. I was holding my shiny alto saxophone. I wasn't dressed in uniform: I was wearing shorts and a tshirt. My body had reverted to the thin physique I had in high school.
It was summer and it was hot. Band camp always seemed to fall on the hottest week and I baked. There was, thankfully, a cool breeze blowing and it was a relief as I stood on the field.
We were in position and the marching director was taking us, a few at a time, to practice our step-off. He slowly went down the line, correcting position and step and posture. I knew I could relax until he got down to where I stood, in the semi-formal parade rest position, one arm behind my back, the other resting on my saxophone as it dangled from my neck.
I don't recall what Ewan and I were talking about. Something high school-ish. Movies, perhaps. Or complaining about the heat. We looked over at the band director looking at our direction and he motioned for Ewan to get to attention. He snapped into perfect position. I was impressed but tried hard not to show it on my face.
The marching director spoke in his harsh voice, "8 counts rest. step off and then 8 counts forward. Mark time march! 1.. 2.. 3.. 4.. 5.. 6.. 7.. 8.."
Ewan stepped off. Perfect curled toes and positioning. Pefect pop of the instrument. I was impressed.
"1.. 2.. 3.. 4.. 5.. 6.. 7.. 8.." Ewan walked the perfect 8 to 5. 8 steps covering exactly 5 yards. I was envious, but I knew that i could do it too. Ewan stood at attention, awaiting further instructionf rom the band director. "Very good. At ease and back to position."
Ewan smiled at me with a grin that challenged me. "Top that!" it said. I wrinked my nose at him and went from my parade rest to a formal posture, my left arm held out in front of me, bracing the saxophone. I pressed my right arm to my side, holding the saxophone from its base. The band director went through the same drill with me and I knew I nailed the 8 to 5. I stood at attention, just waiting for the marching director to give me similar praise and tell me to haul my butt back in line.
"Not so good, Eileene. Great 8 to 5 but your posture is faulty. Get Ewan to help you. At east and back to position."
My heart sank. How could that be less than perfect? I dreaded turning around and seeing that smirt on his face as he stood at parade rest in line. I turned around and my fears were justified. He was practically beaming. I pouted slightly at him, enough to let Ewan know I was pouting but not enough to get a notice from the marching director and forced my feet to get me back in line in parade rest.
I looked over my left houlder at him. He was looking over his right shoulder and grinning.
"What was wrong with my posture?" I tried to hide my anger at the marching director from my voice but you could tell it was there. "My posture is excellent."
"It's good but not perfect. Your left arm is too far out. You've got to bend it in more."
"Yeah, great advice coming from another saxophone player." I couldn't get more sarcasm in my voice if I tried.
"Want me to help you change your posture?"
I laughed. "Heh. Sure. If you think you can get my posture right."
He relaxed from parade rest and put his hand on my arm. "You've got to bend it more like this." He started bending my arm.
Pain like nothing I've felt before shot through it and I opened my mouth to scream.
I woke up.