21 December 2007
the building, btw, is gorgeous, sunny and a snake travels through its concrete sidewalks to sip water from the lake. the dark definitely don't hide it.
we walked, we looked, we talked, we commented on the styrofoam cups that no cultural center should keep in stock, and we left. we left the green grass, the black rocks, the bluish green agave, the black lake and bright clear blue sky behind. you do know green is the new black, verdad?
then we went to an exhibit entitled, anatomy of melancholy. this exhibit was right up my alley, and my senses were on heightened awareness (a bushism would liken it to red alert) when stepping into the gallery.
then all i saw were things that were either esthetically pleasing to my eye or made the hamsters in my brain run really fast on the wheel inside my head.
and then i heard the woman. shit. she was garishly loud. her voice was unnecessarily raised a few octaves, and she wouldn't stop talking. then i figured out, she didn't know how to stop talking. and most likely she was a guard, so we were confined to the same square room for about 20 minutes. i normally am quite good at tuning people out, but her voice managed to penetrate deep into my skull. i thought i ran away from her into a film screening by the artist, but nope. the two seconds i had of dark and quiet were interrupted by her asking the audience of me and two other people if "[we] got it? cause it took ME awhile, and if it took ME awhile to 'get it' i'm assuming you don't get it either." we were looking at the ending credits to a pseudo film. the words were blurry, not at all in focus. there was music accompanying it. i dunno, do YOU get it? "cause me, i know what i get out of it, but i really want to know what the artist was trying to say, you know?"
anyway, i could go on and on about how this woman was entirely disruptive to my normal gallery experience, but i will just leave it be. i hope to swing by again, hopefully NOT in this woman's presence, and this time look at the things i wanted to review in peace.
so yeah, i really liked this exhibition, despite all the unwanted white noise which accompanied it today. this was the first exhibition, possibly ever, that i really liked 90% of the artist's work. perhaps this is because i, too, can relate to melancholy and the obsessive use of exacto knives and sensational tabloid reading that involve my daily existence. well, ever since i got the exacto knife with awesome grip and padding that is. of course.
sometimes i think i should be wandering around with my camcorder in hand. since i haven't, i can only try to describe the moment in words.
one of the days i was walking to and fro, i passed by a certain great diner. one of possibly the last breakfasts that cost under $4 which will keep you full for most of the day on either coast. believe me, i know. i've looked.
but all of that is besides the point. every time i saunter by, i peek in the permanently smudged windows. i can't help it. i just need to know how they stay in business because this diner is a dying american breed.
the one day in question, i looked in and saw this incredible woman. and i mean it in the true, first description sense of the word according to the merriam webster online dictionary:
"1 : too extraordinary and improbable to be believed
this woman, she had such character in her face. i can guess as to her age, perhaps 70, 58? 45? i don't know, and i never will. i'm going to make an educated guess and say she is prob in her 70s. doesn't matter, does it?
the scene i have burned into the metal of my mind goes as follows:
i walk by slowly, head down, as usual, deep in thought, deeply listening to the lyrics whispering into my ears, enjoying the sounds traversing to my brain and back. i briefly glance into at the aforementioned smudged windows at my diner of choice. i see a woman. she is facing the street, her elbows at either side of her plate of food. her face resembles playdough. her skin is the color of pure bone, not quite white, but not far from it. her facial lines travel from the top of her nose to the edges of her cheeks; from the bottom of her lip lines to the end of her chin. the doughy skin is puffy and swells around each of her natural facial features, with the few striking lines deeply entrenched in thought busily carving a map of decades. her eyes, from what i can tell, are closed. her hands are clasped tightly, fingers intertwined. her mouth is moving, nearly imperceptibly, but i can tell since i've stopped abruptly and turned 3/4ths of the way around. she is saying a prayer. she is thankful for her modestly large meal which costs less than $4, less than 1/2 of hourly minimum wage in one of the richest urban areas in the world.
i watch her start and end the prayer. i don't watch her dive for her food. i don't want her to notice that i've observed an intensely private moment of hers. otherwise, perhaps she wouldn't do something like that again. and that moment should be shared with the world. or at least the passersby of that particular diner of which i hope she frequents. it made me think of me, of what i am thankful for, of whether or not i share that with others and what others must think of the frown lines i've acquired in my few decades here on earth. i'm lucky and am a calitexican, so my lines aren't as pronounced as others i know at my age thanks to melanin, but, to me, her lines were so deserved, so full of life and love. and sharing that moment with her i feel, obviously was very internal, but also makes me feel good to be living in a city where i can capture such fleeting moments. my observation could not have been more than 5 seconds, but has definitely left an impression weeks later. don't think i will forget it anytime soon, if ever.
be thankful for what you have. not for what you don't. since i tend to focus on the latter, the former is my cognitive behavioral therapy in practice advice for the day.
12 December 2007
held up in a luxury suite, behind a barricaded door
now that I've cleaned up, gone legit
I can see clearly: round hole
round hole, square peg don't fit
I'm locked in my bedroom, so send back the clowns
my clone wears a brown shirt, and I seduce him when there's no one around
mano y mano, on a bed of nails
bring it on like a storm, till I knock the wind out of his sails
And we don't make eye contact, when we have run-in's in town
just a barely polite nod, and nervous stares towards the ground
I once joined a priest class, plastic, inert
in a slowdance with commerce
like a lens up a skirt
And we liked to party
and we kept it live
and we had a three volume tome of contemporary slang
to keep a handle on all this jive
Ennui unbridled, let's talk to kill the time
how many styles did you cycle through before you were mine?
and it's been a while since we went wild and that's all fine
but we're sleepwalking through this trial
and it's really a crime it's really a crime it's really a crime
it's really criminal
We're just busy tempting, like fate's on the nod
running on empty, bourbon and god
it's been a while since we knew the way
and it's been even longer since our plastic priest class
had a goddamned thing to say
I was a lover before this war
--tv on the radio, i was a lover
am currently at a loss for my own words to sort out the puzzled mess in my head. so i have to use the words of others right now.
all that is left is an empty shell
of my heart that is crushed
i don't never wanna see
what my mind has seen
when you loved me
every night, every night alone with you
every night alone now
I love you
and I miss you, too
i really do love you
and I really miss you too
but I don't know you
and I don't need you
and I don't want you anymore
--cat power, empty shell
funny, upon reading it, depending on the context of the love, it can be either romantic (fully intended i'm sure) or not.
was feeling like molasses earlier, so much so that the brain overpowered itself and shut down for a few hours out of fear of spontaneous combustion.
presently don't really feel any different, only that the immediacy of earlier is over, and now the blank slate is waiting to be filled with words and thoughts that make sense.
this song just came on. both points of view are rather fitting for the moment.
She walked in with sadness in her eyes
I could tell she'd been sleeping with the stars
"Well hello I'm dawn..."
"Yes I've seen you around..."
"I just live down from here..."
She has a dad she doesn't know
Who sends her letters with no return address...
"I don't know his name..."
"He don't know my face..."
"I am better off this way..."
On the weekends I drive her into town
In a car that I borrowed from my mom
She makes hotel beds
Where the sidewalks end
And I wait for her to come home...
Please come home
The one day she finally stops coming around
My best friend said she probably moved out of town
Not a letter was sent...
Not a phone call was made
And I hope she comes back here
--damien jurado, denton, tx
so she will satiate you with the following video and ichat conversation she had while viewing it for the 2nd time. the song is "boy with a coin" by the new texan sam beam, aka, iron and wine.
"ll: i can see that vid but no sound
ll: i shall put it on tumblr
ct: yeah, well, i like the song a lot
he's one of my fav artists around right now
and i liked the dancing
he lives just outside of austin
in marble falls
he used to live in florida
i also like the camera angles
like it's giving them the ultimate deference
ll: i was too distracted by their wrist wrotations
ct: and not sexualizing it more unnecessarily
ct: just letting it speak for itself
it seems very saturated
like the colors or something
i like that
ll: not sure how the do that
ct: [photographer friend] takes pics like that
i could ask him
her skirt goes wheeeeeeee"
enjoy. it's pretty.
11 December 2007
and in that vein, the CT got an email from someone she does not know. apparently it was supposed to go to someone that shares her initials and last name.
sounds cute, jovial, and lighthearted. just what the doc ordered today. but as a quick aside, when did tango dancing become the new black? its ubiquitousness in this part of california has not escaped me. on that note, have fun in palermo hollywood people! it's one of the 53 best places to go in 2008! you guys are such trendsetters.
the identifying deets have been changed to protect the unknowing:
To: ??, ??@kpmg.com, ??@gmail.com
Re: Itinerary & Hola!
Hola! Z-3 arrived. Z-BA met them at the aeropuerto with an auto.
Ate steak! Drank wine! Napped! Ready to go Tango! Luv Z-4
I dont really know how but somehow we seem to have misplaced your itinerary (again...)
Could you send it to this email address?
Glad to hear that the location is good! and also that Disney is so closeare you gonna go there? With a pack of Accountants maybe?
have fun and dont train too hard.
See you soon!
---------------------------- Mup's Address -------------------------------
The # of the Apartment is 5527. I think its the first one (they are right next to each other). It is between Fitzroy and Humboldt. It is in and the closest subte station is .
my phone # is 11 6015 9079
Paul say's, don't drink the water... Otherwise, Mup is running us ragged and we're having a grand time! See you shortly!
05 December 2007
One chance to get everything right.
We have one chance, one chance.
And if we're lucky we might.
My friends, my habits, my family,
they mean so much to me.
I just don't think that it's right.
I've seen so many ships sail in,
just to head back out again and go off sinking.
-- modest mouse, one chance
so, the calitexican woke up to some upsetting news this morning. as she grows older, having been away from her family for going on 11 years, she realizes how much she really misses them at times like these. in the past she thought she, the young texican, was so strong by herself on her journey to being the calitexican she is today. however, in retrospect, she realizes it's ok to need people, it's ok to depend on people, and it's definitely ok to let them know these things. there is only so much one person can do herself (which is quite a bit, i might add).
the calitexican was fortunate enough to spend some good quality time this past thanksgiving with two of her family members. making new happy memories is something the calitexican cherishes a lot. she knows that with the passing of life and the continuation of life, the family still keeps on beating, still keeps on breathing.
with respect to the verses posted up top, the CT doesn't necessarily think that one has to get things right the first time around. in fact, she is a firm believer in second chances. thus, there is a bit of conflicting song lyric interpretation going on in her head. she thinks that isaac means "one chance" at getting life right, but what does that really mean? doesn't life mean making mistakes, learning from the past and moving on? at least that's what this calitexican learned in the past decade of her life. she looks forward to learning more in the next decade, which is rapidly approaching.
she also thinks isaac means that the ships are people continually fucking up, finding they repeatedly have to go back out to sea. since he has some sort of ship theme in this album, perhaps he threw that image in there just for fun. she is going to rule out the possibility that he means humanity keeps fucking up in a larger sense because his past work proves he is very individualistic in nature.
the CT doesn't like to talk about this, but she had a tumultuous relationship with a certain family member. she keeps reminding herself that she made the right decision for her at the time. bottom line is she only hopes that said family member can possibly see her from whatever afterlife they may inhabit and finally know her reasoning for this.
she also feels the need to vocalize that she is trying to steer less ships back and forth herself. but from manning all these boats, in particular an especially mesmerizing one called self- destruction, she would not have learned what she needed to learn. she hopes to leave most of those boats in the past decade of her life. it was a ride...not fun, but unfortunately necessary. she left a lot of people out in the dark, midnight blue waters of its wake without a life preserver. now, she hopes to steer only a couple of boats at a time, and concentrate on the very few of which she is captain. and for those people she left treading water, she can only apologize profusely. more importantly, she knows not to forget those people's memories, or to take for granted their place in her life. she mustmustmust remember, and apply said memory to the next set of issues which life cuddles in the nook of her large elbow, just under her breast.
i guess she feels the need to post today. she did give me permission to say all of this, by the way. i think i'll end it here by paraphrasing something i heard her say in her graduation speech. take a look around you and be very grateful that that person is in your life. decide what that person means to you and let them know how you feel. there may be no tomorrow, so say it today.
04 December 2007
now that song is stuck in my head and driving me a little nuts...
so the calitexican told me earlier today she was chatting with someone she's only met a couple of times, but would like to get to know a bit more. she feels this person can show her the ways of the geeky side. when she mentioned she likes to make videos, he introduced her to the stage 6 site...
she's familiar with divx through her obsessive heroes watching. she got into the heroes game late, and as a result had to catch some episodes online from far, far away. divx was the format presented in some regions. she thought the quality was pretty fucking outstanding. the most impressive part she found was when she and her lousy internet connection were still able to retain great quality when she fiddled around w/ it and made it full screen. usually when things are full screen and over a crappy connection, badbadbad things happen. not this time. and another thing that impressed her was when she had it in just the browser, it had an option to dim the rest of the computer screen that was not part of the video. now that, my friends, is the work of a real geek. that is something she never knew she wanted, and now pretty much does not want to live without.
back to stage 6. stage 6 is the "youtube" of divx. unfortunately for her, the CT was not able to get online with her beloved rockstar #7 today, but the next time she does, you can bet she will be in full on geek mode, complete with fiddling around with frame rates to make sure you can see her video just as she sees them on her computer.
and, just because i can, i leave you readers with this site (thanks elle). the pictures are gorgeous, artistic and absolutely inspiring. i wish i knew how to take/make pictures like those. perhaps one day i will.
27 November 2007
this describes what is going on: Rape Epidemic Raises Trauma of Congo War
this describes how you can help: What You Can Do to Help
thank you, and have a good day.
15 November 2007
in other news, the calitexican finished another one of her shorts. this one is a big departure from her previous work, and it a very very first draft of first drafts of the bigger project that she is in the process of conceptualizing. she did this prelude to a short for a few reasons. when she first started blogging, she was having camcorder connection issues and imovie/ram issues as well. she needed to figure this out, and so she did. this was also the first time she completed a project using imovie 6. she needed to figure that out too, and so she did. there are a few new features she liked, and others that frustrated her, but only because they were kind of cool, but limited in physicality when, if not so, could be amazing tools.
this piece (see below) was quickly slapped together in two separate sessions. one was rapidly cutting and editing. the other was choosing a piece of music to pull it together. she was looking for something radically different musically speaking, then she happened to listen to a song as she crossed the street on her way home one afternoon. she realized she hadn't seen this band in awhile, and since she was going to work on the piece anyway, she would first see when the band would be coming to the CT's town. to her utter dismay, she discovered her favorite (almost) local band had, well, disbanded, and they were going their separate ways after 7 years together. the CT told me she thinks that they were getting too big, and perhaps that helped the band's demise. you hear it everyday don't you? anyway, so she figured since she's working on a short about dia de los muertos, a celebration of a life no longer with us, she thought it was quite appropriate to include this band in her rough draft of a first draft.
in her haste to post it on the web, she put the frames to 15 per second. after viewing it, she thinks she may change the frame rate, but at this moment, she's too sleepy to contemplate doing such things. she will probably do it first thing in the morning, however...
oh, in completely unrelated matters, the CT needs to purge something since she doesn't go to confession. the ladder she borrowed for 30 minutes while fixing the bathroom this past weekend is still in her hallway. she walked past the construction site that was once her laundromat (RIP), and not a contractor in sight....oops. she's very very sorry.
ed. note: the footage was shot not by the CT, but by her partner, MK. they are collaborating on the larger aforementioned piece. the piece was edited by the CT.
12 November 2007
then this weekend, she helped out on a project that now is complete, and it is easy to show. she and her boo redecorated her bathroom. her bathroom before, well, i have used it on a few occasions... let's just say it was less than remarkable. i don't want her never to invite me over again (sorry dawg, but you know it's true!!), so i need to be nice.
so, with that project, and along with the help of elle, she has become inspired again to make something more short term. the calitexican used to be quite the crafty person. so much so, she would be at her day job and her coworker noticed that her hands were always moving, like there was a project they knew that needed completion. and, now that i know her pretty well, i would say she is never quite still for very long, even if she is just kind of sitting around, her hands and mind are both always running at varying levels of intensity.
the project consisted of cleaning, painting and hanging things. the place looks rather girly now, and that's good because the calitexican lives with a calimexicana. now they both feel at home in their most private of espaces.
here's one picture for your viewing pleasure. i apologize for the poor quality of the picture, but i'm not quite sure how to rotate a pic using html or else you know there would be a better quality one up. perhaps it will be something i tinker around with and return to this post. but you get the idea...very "chick" like.
so the bathroom project was the impetus for a new time for inspiration. then elle, an INFJ, decided to share with the CT a jungian personality test (which is, according to the description of an INFJ, something she likes to do). the CT took this test about 3.5 years ago, but then forgot about it, and swept it under the rug. the CT thinks she was probably the same result back then as she was last night: ISFP. this type is a composer artist. and indeed, it closely matches many major aspects of the CT's personality (from what i can tell from recently getting to know her better). some choice ones she let me share with you are the following:
1. ISFPs live in the world of sensation possibilities. They are keenly in tune with the way things look, taste, sound, feel and smell. They have a strong aesthetic appreciation for art, and are likely to be artists in some form, because they are unusually gifted at creating and composing things which will strongly affect the senses.
2. ISFPs tend to be quiet and reserved, and difficult to get to know well. They hold back their ideas and opinions except from those who they are closest to. They are likely to be kind, gentle and sensitive in their dealings with others. They are interested in contributing to people's sense of well-being and happiness, and will put a great deal of effort and energy into tasks which they believe in.
3. They're original and independent, and need to have personal space. They value people who take the time to understand the ISFP, and who support the ISFP in pursuing their goals in their own, unique way. People who don't know them well may see their unique way of life as a sign of carefree light-heartedness, but the ISFP actually takes life very seriously, constantly gathering specific information and shifting it through their value systems, in search for clarification and underlying meaning.
4. ISFPs have no desire to lead or control others, just as they have no desire to be led or controlled by others. They need space and time alone to evaluate the circumstances of their life against their value system, and are likely to respect other people's needs for the same.
5. They are concrete in speech and utilitarian in getting what they want.
6. Of course, composing must not be thought of as only writing music, but as bringing into harmonious form any aspect of the world of the five senses, and so when an especially gifted painter, sculptor, choreographer, film maker, songwriter, chef, decorator, or fashion designer shows up, he or she is likely to be an Composer. (emphasis added)
interesting, isn't it? bodes well for the things i believe she wishes to bring into the world.
elle, also an expert blog searcher, showed her two sites, both of which are now permanently linked to the left. one is of a clothes designer, the other of an working artist. the former blog inspired the CT to get back into sewing since she does have a sewing machine. the latter blog inspired her in many ways, but mainly artistically (visual and written).
thus the CT determined she's no longer content to work on mainly one project, but have a few going around at once. she's convinced it will help bring her happiness and make her as sane as she can possibly be. she's beginning to feel life again, beginning to see in colors, beginning to add more to her personal palate than black clothes, red lips and bud select on her tongue.
to start, she put new life into some planters that had been long neglected, but no longer. soon her nose will begin to work again, starting with the smells of lavender and rosemary early in the morning.
05 November 2007
this album, not even the official soundtrack by the way, is far superior to the movie that supposedly inspired it.
the movie is basically a sample of all sorts of older gangster plots and thematic ideas of family, betrayal, rise to fame, alternatives to capitalism, is "traditional" capitalism any different than "our" kind?, fall from grace, etc.
the album is basically a sample of 70s funk/disco, a bit of 80s/90s notable quotables. the lyrics mention all the (good) gangster movies that interweave jay z's retelling of his brooklyn thug days. the album, however, takes its inspiration only as a loose blueprint, cuts it up and spits out a 3D architect's model. the movie only superimposes its tracing paper, changes the color and tries to pass it off as something novel. nope. tsk, tsk. ain't gonna fool this calitexican.
apparently, hova has attracted the mainstream press to his success: Jay-Z Finds Himself at the Movies. who knew the paper was so into him? i guess he is a hometown boy done good.
good tracks include: pray, hello brooklyn (any shout out to the best city in the world will suffice...), roc boys, sweet, party life, ignorant shit, the first 1/2 of say hello, success, and the title track. ok, pretty much all of it is great, and the rest is pretty damn good.
(a side note, she's pretty sure the horns in "roc boys" are also prominetly featured in another samplers' work, grindhouse, by the rodriguez and the tarantino. the horns, according to wikipedia, are by the Menahan Street Band. she can't prove this via the internet, but her memory strangely rarely fails when it comes to music. she believes the horn sample was located either in the "previews" between the two features or in the "rated r" caption just before death proof. if this so, she just demonstrated yet another film geeky trait...you read it here first people.)
she hasn't been this excited about an album in awhile, and quite a few have been released in the past couple of months. none have produced this reaction in her. and as such, loyal CT readers, she'll share a recent story which took place in the greatest city in the world. in the lower east side. this will be told as a children's book, just because.
i am sitting a very small table with my friend, my cousin and my mom. i'm holding a cold, icy drink. sluuuuuuuup. yummy, this whiskey on the rocks is really good. :) what? why don't you guys want to drink with me?
we have been waiting for a hour to eat. i'm hungry. we all are.
hmm. i wonder why two really big older men are at a hip restaurant on a friday night? gee, they have thingies that curl up from their necks and into their ear. they must be hot wearing suits and walking around the restaurant a lot. maybe they are secret service? who is the politician here? the united nations is in session.
gee, when are we going to eat? it is 10 o'clock. my tummy does not like whiskey without food in it.
oh, i'm glad we are sitting down to eat now. it is now 30 minutes later than 10 o'clock. and just in time because i have to use the restroom.
i hope i can remember where my family is sitting. two whiskeys make me not remember things very well. oh yes, i see them. hey, our table is right by one of the old guys in stuffy suits. we may be brown mister, but we didn't do nothing. i promise.
la di da, i'm walking through the hip people, la di da. my head is a little fuzzy. oh my. my heart is beating faster. i see saw jay z sitting right next to my family! oh, that's what those old suits are doing here.
i promise mr. security guy, i'm not a stalker. i'm just having my first experience freaking out after seeing a celebrity. he is the first famous person i have done that over. i promise. thanks for letting me stay at my table. i'm hungry and my family likes to eat with me.
bye bye jay z. hova. s. carter. whatever nickname you like right now. you were the first guy to get me liking hip hop a lot. thank you. next time, the whiskey is on you. oh, and you are much thinner in person than i imagined you would be.
04 November 2007
the calitexican has been on a self-imposed hiatus for a few weeks. she's been conjuring up new projects and meeting with people that keeps her away from the computer in any significant chunks of time. as she feels at home in front of a 15 inch screen typing furiously at the keyboards while alt-tabbing through different applications, she can safely say, this is the first day she's felt at home in a long time. but, as usual, she digresses.
american gangster. part of the on-going, but temporarily put on pause, gangster marathon. she has never reviewed a contemporary gangster movie, but here she goes.
1. it's very long.
there. that's about all she has to say about that. she was very disappointed. and there was no need for it to be 3 hours. the pacing was all wrong and the story not engaging enough to keep the CT, or the person behind her, awake during the movie. it's a renter people.
good lessons on story telling, pacing and editing. it helps to see what NOT to do.
23 October 2007
so she doesn't know what else to say about it, other than she loves the ang lee, and perhaps it just explains that what lee meant to do in sense and sensibility and brokeback mountain. she didn't know if that was all that he meant, perhaps it is not just that simple. she refuses to believe that it is. but maybe it is just that simple.
16 October 2007
please go see this one:
it was made in the calitexican's hometown. it was filmed in one of the CT's rival high schools. it was/is amazingly hilarious.
08 October 2007
"But amid all the ceremony, what really gets to Ms. Guevara is the use of the man she calls “Poppy” in ways that she says are completely removed from his revolutionary ideals, like when a designer recently put Che on a bikini."
haha..."poppy." oh, and the rest...insane.
03 October 2007
1. she loves when dialogue in a movie brings attention to an action that wouldn't be explained in most movies.
2. she loves when dialogue in a movie brings attention to an action that wouldn't be explained in most movies, and still is not explained in the most recent movie.
3. she's obsessed with and lives by the number three (3).
1. a widely known fact about the calitexican is that she loves the wes anderson. one of her favorite scenes is in royal tenebaums when chaz comes in w/ his two young boys. the three are all armed with suitcases and a dog. the boys are tired and just walk up the stairs. ethel, chas' mother, is hosting a bridge game (or championship...not fully explained itself, and therefore lends itself to the greatest of ironies there as well...) and asks chas what's going on. chas breathlessly replies that they got locked out of their apartment. ethel asks, did you call a locksmith? chas nods and says vaguely, uh-huh. ethel replies, i'm confused. did you pack before or after you got locked out?
2. as stated in the last post, she just saw shaun of the dead. there's one scene where shaun goes to save his mother and step dad from getting eaten by english zombies. he gets there in a car driven by his roommate. he leaves the roommate in the driveway sitting in the car while he goes in the house. the roommate promises not to get out of the car b/c of the zombies everywhere. when shaun comes out of the house, and the car is wrapped around a street sign. shaun exclaims excitedly, but you were parked! roommate: yeeeeaaaaaah, i know. guess we'll have to take the jag then.
2a. in the short hotel chevalier (anderson, 2005), natalie portman has several very large and very dark bruises that become slowly revealed as she gradually undresses. jason schwartzman remarks, "you have bruises on your body". she says nothing, but looks at him and then continues kissing him. annnnnndddd... just earlier portman asks him if he's slept with anyone. he immediately says "no. have you?" there is a long long pause, and then she says, "no." which is clearly a complete lie. he says, "that was a long pause." she doesn't say anything but hugs him instead.
no explanations for 2 or 2a. incredible. and brilliant.
the ct thought it was pretty hilarious. she knows she is not alone in this assessment.
she greatly admired the quick editing throughout the movie in how it pulls the viewer out of one place quickly to transition to another. she actually has seen this type of editing before, specifically in robert rodriguez's early work. she wonders if this was an influence on shaun's editor, chris dickens. a quick look on imdb surfaces nothing except that dickens also edited sirens back in the day.
she will do some research. and also, since she's blatantly talking about it, she just might try to blatantly be influenced by this quick editing. ok, she blatantly admits she already was strongly influenced by this quick editing, so much so that she will admit right here that she's currently working on it in her next little video. it's not the easiest thing in the world, she contends, but she does love the process of trying to figure it out.
01 October 2007
26 September 2007
so heat is a part of her on going "gangster" movie marathon. this time, de niro and pacino are in the same movie. wow. but with only something like 5 minutes shared airtime. she thought heat was strangely told in the beginning, the viewer is placed right into the thick of things, which leads to some feeling of being lost while the story is whirring past you. if you don't pay attention, you will be left behind. she does think this story telling style is on purpose for this movie, whereas others, such as the bourne movies, also use this technique, but since their story is inherently less interesting and complex, it just seems contrived.
she's not going to go into the plot, not that she ever does, but she will mention two things. one, it is definitely worth seeing for the themes, actors (shout out to president david palmer!!) and writing. two, the directing is pretty incredible. there's one scene in particular where pacino's character, vincent, is looking for de niro's gang. the camera is focused on vincent, his forehead itself seems to take up 2/3rds of the height of the screen. the shot is wide and split screen, shout out to old school cop movies she thinks. behind him is police headquarters from where he is making the phone call. the headquarters are bright and tan w/ blues and are crystal clear, showing an interesting perspective due to the rails on the ceiling leading the eye into the background. vincent is making several phone calls to track down the gang, and being the "best" detective there is, he believes he knows where they are. but this gang is not going to be taken down by anyone, not even vincent. so one by one, the gang takes care of itself, protecting their own, and each time the camera goes back to that wide shot of pacino, he is the only thing that stays clear. the background starts to get fuzzy with the first phone call, and proceeds to become just an abstract mixture of tans and blues as he hangs up the last call. ironic thing is, of course, he did know where they were, he just underestimated them just slipping through his fingers.
so the CTs faithful readers know that she loves mean streets. (by the way, de niro is just as hot as he was in mean streets, albeit much older and sophisticated...) and in looking for pictures for her post today she got out-geeked. turns out, this very week, mean streets premiered 34 years ago. wow. wow.
so she took about an hour break after watching heat and then moved on to panic in needle park. faithful readers also know she loves the young pacino in kind of an obsessive way. well, this movie solidified something she has been suspecting for a long time. pacino was a much better actor in the 1970s (and maybe early 80s) than he is currently. he's not as hungry anymore and now just seems to be "PACINO" in every role. this will include yelling and generally raising his voice or slamming his fist to get attention. yes, she thinks so even in carlito's way, however, perhaps he was trying to return to his pre-"PACINO" roots in donnie brasco by being a pathetic old mobster with a gambling problem.
back to panic in needle park. she contends this movie is a political one in how it immediately starts off with details of an abortion and then maybe 10 minutes later goes into the depths of heroin addiction, prostitution, racism, sexism and small time petty junkie thefts. pacino shows quite a range, thanks to the screenwriters didion and dunne. they wrote without pity or judgment, something the calitexican regards as the ultimate goal in story telling, well, with a story as dark as this one at least.
again, wont really go into the plot here except for one brief mention one of her favorite scenes. the junkie that used to be helen is expecting a visit from mom and mom's friends. pacino's bobby convinces her to go to get "bread" (meaning money, although they probably could have used actual bread since the CT suspects they don't really eat that much food). junkie helen is resistant, but loves bobby so much that she can't separate her mind from his. so in order to get ready for her midwestern visitors she puts in a ridiculous white ribbon in her hair. it's totally what a junkie thinks that "good" girls look like, but of course, the junkie gets it COMPLETELY wrong, ultimately proving what a true junkie she really is.
also, how wrong is it for junkies in love to have a puppy?
this movie also had, in the CT's humble and extremely modest opinion, one of the BEST endings in movie history. watch it. you will not be disappointed.
and, for those of you trivia buffs, you may know that this is one of pacino's first movies. this was the movie coppola used to convince the paramount execs that pacino should be michael corleone. and in fact, the CT remarked that she could see bits of the "that's-my-family-not-me-kay" michael in this movie. this was the movie that marty bergman saw and was convinced that pacino was serpico. that is a bit of a stretch for the CT to believe, but hey, to each their own. (bergman was also the dude that made pacino tony montana too...)
oh, one last thing. the CT loves wes anderson and rushmore. she recognized some things in heat that rushmore blatently stole. as she's mentioned before, the CT is becoming quite the film geek.
until next time... she's off to the right coast and plans on making some movies while she's out there...
16 September 2007
she closes her eyes
and smiles as the record drops
--jukebox, ani difranco
there are pictures, some are pretty, some are pink, some are fuzzy. she looked at them, and realized pictures of the park help her flip through the jukebox of her memory and stop to think of being in all those parks in the years past.
her heart lies heavy as she picks one 45, it drops, the needle makes the requisite connection and the music pop, pop, pops to life. she's in a park and staring into the huge brown watery eyes of her beloved. beer bottles laid scattered about, and largely ignored, off to the side. she was thinking, thinking, thinking that she could lay in that park, without a blanket, on the dewy crisp grass, with the cold starting to envelope them as the sun set somewhere off the pacific, staring into those emotive eyes forever. they say nothing to each other, but just stare at each others' face, busily drinking in the features, the lines of their lips, the laugh lines, the frown lines, the hairlines. tons of lines. there is a lot of blinking and a lot of shy smiling. their blinking at each other would be the only tangible communication between them, if an outsider were to observe, as their fledgling love grew exponentially that day through their eyes.
the song abruptly stops, the needle lifts, and she is rapidly whisked back to the present, and then she pushes "send."
14 September 2007
oh, and the movie was delicatessen, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, 1991. she had seen this movie about 8 years ago while she was the newyorktexican. (ugh, she still needs a good nickname for this!!) she remembered really liking it, so why not see it in the park?
Jeunet was also the guy that brought us that sickeningly sweet amelie, which the CT grudgingly admits that she likes very much, despite its heavy emphasis on romance. she also likes the music so much she would study while listening to it.
back to delicatessen. so, it was interesting to watch as she realized there was not much dialogue in the movie. Jeunet really knows how to tell a quirky story through bizzare actions/characters, syncopated rhythms, and artsy camera angles. perhaps this is the reason his movies are pretty successful in the United States. when an engaging story transcends language as the main story telling device, it is nearly inevitable that it should get noticed outside its native tongue.
now she wants to see city of lost children because she never did. and she's seen amelie enough that she doesn't necessarily have to see it again, but why not?
09 September 2007
so the calitexican just saw casino, scorsese, 1995. she was talking to stiffy about seeing this movie. stiffy asked, "have you seen raging bull yet?" the ct answered, "yes."" stiffy continued, "raging bull is like a blueprint for casino." since the CT had just seen about 20 minutes of casino, she thought she also saw mean streets as a big influence on (at least those 20 minutes of ) casino.
as has been mentioned before, the ct hatehatehates knowing anything about a movie before seeing it, so she wasn't entirely thrilled at the conversation above, but she did kind of just put the thought away. then when the relationship developed between sharon stone's character (who, by the way, was really great in this movie) and robert de niro's, she understood what stiffy was talking about. these are not movies about casinos or boxing, they are about male catholic guilt trying to make sense of the world in which they inhabit. and ... mean streets was exactly the same. it all comes back to mean streets for the calitexican. (and yes, she knows that de niro's character in casino is jewish, but the screenwriters are not...)
and thus, she really liked casino, but did think it was a frankenstein of scorsese's prior successes, with admittedly a few little new elements here and there. she also was reminded of someone who would say casino was his favorite movie. the CT now understands that this person actually uses some of the dialogue in his everyday speech. that's some dedication there.
08 September 2007
07 September 2007
she loves that one of her favorite characters from arrested development, her favorite tv show of all time, was in the movie. george michael did a great job as playing, well, exactly the same character. but this character is so amazing that he should be spread amongst various genres and media.
and mclovin? well, he was mclovin. go see the damn movie already.
05 September 2007
the calitexican gave up the art of show photography long ago when she was a east coast texican (i still can't think of a name for this place in her life...). she does have some good clear pics she took of a band that is, sadly, no longer with us. she feels fortunate to have seen this band quite a few times and the memories of each show will definitely stay with her.
the calitexican will not claim to know anything about recording music on to a high-quality portable digital source. sometimes it appears to be very complicated. but once she starts asking questions, she is pretty sure she can figure it out.
04 September 2007
how to bend
how to sway and say
i think i understand
-angry anymore, ani difranco, 1999
now i rarely talk about events in the calitexican's day to day life, but i had to just show what a calitexican she really is. she was driving around in a zipcar, and listening to ani difranco on her way to whole foods (started in austin, texas) to shop for vegetarian food while carrying a "insert east coast liberal arts college here" tote bag. and yes, she did bring bags to put her groceries in thank you very much. and she gave her 5 cent credit to some extremely well deserving non-profit organization too. too bad the whole foods corporation is kind of out of control.
wow. just one of them days.
she had another one of those days about 3 years ago when she was in berkeley (of all places) riding her bike to a yoga class. she was riding with her own yoga mat, whose mesh bag is made of recycled plastic soda bottles.
sometimes she thinks she might have to check the "ican" part of her calitexican-ness. being that she pretty much eats breakfast tacos nearly every morning makes her think she's ok on that end too. yum, i think i'll have to ask her for a recipe soon.
02 September 2007
the special features show an interview with zoe cassavetes where she says something along the lines of "this isn't a romantic movie, it's a self introspective movie with some romantic elements." and this movie certainly is just that, and just what the calitexican agrees is what is lacking from most formulaic romantic comedies. the calitexican has heard over and over from the texican one line that was in the movie: you have to be happy with and love yourself before you can find love. hearing this line made the calitexican wonder if the texican and cassavetes wrote the script together, or maybe that the texican and gena rowland are friends and discuss the lives of their children in these terms.
without really giving anything away, parker posey and drea de matteo are best friends. posey is 39, gorgeous, and single. drea is married and unhappy. the film concentrates mainly on posey's character, but does tend to interweave the stories together as if to say, "don't settle," or "don't fall into a relationship just because you feel alone," or even "if you are in a relationship with someone you love, it is not always good times." or even...ok, that's enough.
and in that spirit, the movie ended at just the right time. ok, you found each other, then what? and that's exactly a point in the calitexican's life with which she is very familiar.
01 September 2007
yesterday the calitexican called it an early night and decided to snuggle on the couch with an old friend of hers...dazed and confused (1993, linklater). she knows probably every line to this movie, so watching the movie with her may be annoying if she is around other people. like she's referenced and acknowledged before, she loves to talk during movies (about the movie, not about random things). she knows this is a weakness of hers and she does apologize to all those she annoys or offends upon doing so.
she likes this movie because it is a snapshot of what her life was like in 1992. she was a wee semi-little texican, and she knows a lot of the extras in the film. also, the calitexican and her mom, the texican, were driving home at the end of the day. they noticed that something weird was going on in their quiet neighborhood. someone had painted a fire hydrant to look like abraham lincoln. and then they realized that only two blocks away from where they lived this masterpiece of a movie was shot. well, not all of it of course, but just a few scenes. in particular the car chase of the high school boys and the middle school boys. right before ben affleck gets a shotgun pulled on him by carl's mom.
also, the CT mentioned once or twice in this blog that she likes, no, that she loves parks. the park she first encountered when she was a wee little texican was the park where the jr. high boys play and where mitch gets his ass beat.
anyway, she enjoyed her break from the gangster movies, but she thinks it is high time to return. and she thinks the next one is heat (1995, michael mann). this was a recommendation from a person she recently met who is a big fan of these gangster flicks.
29 August 2007
i do not attempt to deny that i think very highly of him...that i greatly esteem him. that i like him.
the calitexican has lost some of the steam (steem?) from her earlier post regarding the brilliance of ang lee. however, she will quickly try to describe why the director of the hulk has a special place within her chest, even surviving the aftermath of grenade that was set off.
this can probably be done in a few short sentences. lee understands both repressed and unrequited feelings. he has shown this over and over again in different movies, with different stories and even across genres. the calitexican also understands these emotions, and thinks that she has not seen someone put them on the screen quite like lee does. she thinks most chick flicks are poor excuses for the true emotions that come from having loved and lost, and lee is not afraid to explore these emotions and replicate them to the best of his story-telling abilities. and his new movie, love, caution, promises to deliver yet another heartbreaking exploration. how could it not with a name like that?
i am not sure, but i do believe the calitexican likes seeing the heartbreaking movies with true emotion, and none of this kate hudson formulaic crap or even zach braff's feeble attempts to bring a quirky male voice to the chick flick, because it reminds her of what the flip side of the heartbreak feels like, which is only why it is powerful in the first place, and which is something she realizes a few people are lucky enough to experience. i think she believes the standard chick flick only reinforces the stereotype of women being in love with the idea of being in love, and not actually allowing themselves to fall in love with all of its good and bad qualities. because love, as wonderful and special as it is, is never easy. if it was, then life would almost be irrelevant. she feels the chick flick only glosses over these feelings in a cheap manner with absolutely no character development to make the viewer actually care if they get together in the end, cause you know they will. this is probably why she can only limit herself to a few genres within the chick flick: austen/wharton/lee. cause when the calitexican falls, she falls hard. or so i've heard.
whenever i get the chance, i'll ask her to verify these statements.
now i'm so happy i found you.
how i love you.
so many tears i was searching/
so many tears i was wasting/
now i can see you be you.
how could i ever misplace you?
how i want you.
long, long, long (cover of the john lennon song, sung by elliott smith, 2002, the echo, los angeles)
the calitexican was reading the paper yesterday/this morning and found out that one of her favorite directors of all time is coming out with a new movie. this would be the one and only ang lee. she had seen the wedding banquet (1995) in college and really liked it, but didn't think all that much of it other than it was a clever movie. then she saw the ice storm (1997). she didn't really like it as much as the critics did upon the first viewing. let's just say that repeat viewings and living life has made the calitexican appreciate that movie more.
and then she saw sense and sensibility (1995). the calitexican is quite well known among her ranks for generally despising "chick flicks." she feels like her skin is bubbling up and turning into pus-filled boils if she is forced to watch one. she is constantly jumpy and downright irritable if she does have to sit through one.
like most things in life, she does make room for an exception: jane austen inspired movies. the calitexican was actually taking a summer school class called "great books, good movies." perhaps you don't know much about the calitexican, but if you have read any part of this blog, you know she likes to read, and she likes movies. so this was the perfect class for her to take during one mellow summer in rhode island nearly a decade ago. (so does that mean she was the newtexican? hmm... she'll gladly take suggestions for her ny years in the comments) she read/saw/wrote scenes for tom jones, great expectations, the color purple (shame on you steven spielberg...awful movie), age of innocence (favorite book of the bunch, beginning the CT's obsession with edith wharton), howard's end and sense and sensibility. she thinks she may be forgetting one book, but she's nearly positive she has all of them committed to memory.
so upon reading sense and sensibility first and then seeing the movie, she really appreciated the way emma thompson (as screenwriter) decided to adapt the story to fit into a movie. some large characters were cut, some scenes omitted, as goes for most adaptations. but since the calitexican decided to add to her mounting school debt to take this class, she definitely paid attention to these things for the first time in her young life. she was so moved by this movie she cried. she's not sure if she cried the first time she saw it, however it's quite possible considering she was missing her family and friends since they were 4 hours south by either car/bus/train/plane, take your pick.
the calitexican is not ashamed to admit that every time she views sense and sensibility she cries exactly three times at certain points in the movie. so upon each viewing of the movie, she began to notice certain things with the direction, and in particular one part still confounds her. since she doesn't have the movie in front of her, and her memory is getting cluttered with old age, she will not describe it in detail now. but she will say that this shot which involves a close up of a window and expands into a wide shot of a hallway, is nearly identical to a shot in brokeback mountain (2005), if not lee's most famous work to date, then certainly his most controversial. also, it is the ultimate "chick flick."
this scene in brokeback mountain is heartbreaking if not only for the fact that during the scene the calitexican sobbed like her heart was breaking for the first time. it's when the audience realizes that jack (jake gyllenhaal) has stolen the shirt of his beloved ennis (heath ledger) from their first time working together decades earlier. even though ennis pushed jack away from his heart and his life, you know that he loved him in only the way he knew how. and you know that ennis was tortured for the rest of his life, unable to love anyone else the way he loved jack. and in that scene, there's also an open window, shot widening, no person to be seen, with a fluttering curtain (is that true about the curtain in each movie? she'll have to do some research...)
the calitexican unfortunately has to stop the post, she hasn't even written why she thinks these movies touch her soul, and thus her excitement for the new movie. as you can see, she has plenty to say about the ang lee.
28 August 2007
now, the calitexican has been debating with herself on whether or not she should say something about the rumors surrounding owen wilson. as 1/2 of the great anderson/wilson writing team, she has an extreme amount of respect for his writing abilities. she does, of course, have a sense of humor, but she does not respect his comedic talents as much as she respects his brain.
on the way to work this morning, the calitexican was listening to elliott smith, yet another favorite of the calitexican's. she kept thinking about how elliott supposedly committed suicide, and was prominently featured in the suicide scene in the royal tenenbaums. her heart ached as she thought about the turmoil one must have to be in in order to attempt such a drastic act.
in particular, she thought that elliott may know a thing or two about depression and/or suicide. so she was listening to the below song and thinking about owen wilson:
a passing feeling (from a basement on a hill. 2003)
everything is gone but the echo of the burst of a shell
and i'm stuck here waiting for a passing feeling
in the city i built up and blew to hell
i'm stuck here waiting for a passing feeling
still i sinned all the time
my request for relief
down the dead power lines
though i'm beyond belief
in the help i require
just to exist at all
took a long time to stand
took an hour to fall.
i'm stuck here waiting for a passing feeling
stuck here waiting for a passing feeling
still i sinned all the time
my request for relief
down the dead power lines
though i'm beyond belief
in the help i require
just to exist at all
took a long time to stand
took an hour to fall
although she knows she doesn't know the wilson family personally, her heart and thoughts go out to them right now...
ok, ok, a few more quotes:
dignan: (drawing on a map) there, you see the star is me, the X is anthony. bob, you're the zero out here in the car.
bob: what are you putting tape on your nose for?
dignan: (excited during the bookstore robbery) get one of those bags. let's move, come on!! a bigger one you idiot! what do you think!
bookstore manager: don't call me an idiot you punk.
dignan: (with false calmness) do you have bigger bags for atlases or dictionaries, uh, sir?
dignan: anthony!! bob's gone! he stole his car!
guy in bar: (looks at dignan's crewcut) you're in the army, yes?
dignan: (smiling) no, i just have short hair.
26 August 2007
the calitexican was going to include these pics as part of the serpico post, but she decided the young pacino that she wants to marry deserves as many posts as she can devote to him...
here is seripco bored. how cute:
here is serpico looking very very, um, stylish...and ok, ok, here he is looking cute again:
ok, well, the calitexican, as you can see, clearly had fun looking at serpico and thinking about the hipsters (that emulate his style) she sees as she walks around this earth. she was also toying around with html and pictures on this post to see what she can learn for future posts.
try this trick and spin it, yeah/
your head will collapse/
but there's nothing in it/
and you'll ask/
where is my mind?
--"where is my mind," the pixies (surfer rosa, 1988)
the calitexican believes that just perhaps maybe frank black saw 8 1/2 and wrote this song based on the movie. it actually kind of does describe the first scene of the movie. to see what she means, please follow this link and scroll to about 2:15 into the clip. she absolutely loved this scene, so she would actually request for you, if you have the time, to watch the whole thing.
the way this song jumps around in subject, weaving elements of dreams and memories back into reality, "where is my mind?" is a 4 minute microcosm of 8 1/2 itself.
this film is amazing, and enough so for the calitexican to know that she needs to see it again on dvd on the comfort of her couch. she saw it in a quite chilly park surrounded by distraction, particularly by one elderly, rude and passive aggressive man (to call this person a gentleman would be a disservice to the word), and she believes this movie deserves better than that. she normally doesn't care if people talk around her, especially in a public park, but this man was just a sad awful human with, like, lots of toxic energy.
back to the movie. she was intrigued by the dreams, the music, the gorgeous actresses, and most of all, the style. wow. she feels all of these people could be living now and fit right in. good choice on keeping the style simple, classic and thus made it persevere time and culture.
she could be mistaken, but maybe not. there's one scene where the director's friend dances with the younger american woman he wants to marry. they are dancing separately and in a kind of spazzy way (she is currently scouring the internet for video of the scene, stay tuned...). immediately the calitexican thought of the dance scene in pulp fiction between john travolta and uma thurman. the men were both wearing suits, and the women, although wearing different colors (albeit one wore black and the other wore black and white), were also wearing similar outfits. the male actors both had similar hair, the female actors also had similar hairstyles.
(a very quick internet search confirms that tarantino did indeed pay homage to fellini's dance scene. seems like the calitexican may have the potential to become quite the film nerd afterall. )
she also thought a shot of the hotel hallway also inspired madonna's video justify my love, but the calitexican can safely say that she does not consider the latter work to be a great piece of art, but merely something that shocks for shock sake. which she supposes means it achieved what it set out to, but the calitexican is going to stop before she starts analyzing this period of madonna's career.
perhaps all of you are wondering why the calitexican spends so much time watching movies. she believes watching these movies are like studying texts. she is not so much passively watching them, but constantly learning from them. she looks at shot composition, lighting, she weaves together visual and textual themes, and, as illustrated above, is thinking about influences on others. all of this research she hopes will continue to stimulate her expanding interest in making videos, and maybe even a short movie one day. but she knows she has to start somewhere, and with all her years in school, she feels very comfortable researching. so research she shall.