Sunday, January 27, 2008
Questions like these always seem big and important, and often somewhat pretentious if not asked properly, and I wonder, is it something a 16-year-old can really answer? The question of fate. The dealings of the universe. All that stuff you're never really sure you want answered. Can I tackle it? Can I actually answer it? Or am I left to just make a few simple, probably wrong, most likely idiotic but educated guesses?
In truth, a 16-year-old probably can't answer these questions, most of the time no one can answer these questions. But, as a 16-year-old sitting in her room in the middle of the night when she should be sleeping, I can give it a guess.
Let me be clear that I hate fate. I hate the concept of it, I hate the idea of it, I hate the idea that something is predetermined and that nothing you can do can change it. It's not a control thing, it's not a rebellious thing, it's just not something I'm comfortable with. I've never believed in it before, and for the most part, I think I probably never will. But occasionally I'll wonder, I'll really wonder, if I'm wrong. Sometimes things work out in such a way that you really do wonder if it was meant to be that way.
Take this, up until today I've had virtually one goal in mind; to see David Tennant in Hamlet with the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-Upon-Avon this August. I've been working for it, thinking about it, plotting for it, and generally obsessing about if for a good half a year now. A while back, an opportunity arose where such a spectacular feat might have actually been possible. We had it all worked out, and then suddenly, it failed. It broke apart underneath me, and now it will never, ever, in a million years, ever happen.
Needless to say, I was crushed. Like REALLY really crushed. I'm horribly depressed, sitting in my room, when all of a sudden I discover, not only the song I've been looking desperately for to sing at my school's Solo and Ensemble Concert, but also the mysterious second Doctor Who Album that I've been waiting and waiting and waiting for since September. Both of which mysteriously appeared on my computer, in iTunes, a mere two hours after my wildest dreams were pulled away from me.
I find it interesting that despite the fact that I could never find these things before, these things I wanted so desperately, yet suddenly, the day the one thing I want disappears, they appear.
It's instances like these I find myself questioning my previous thoughts of fate. Can something this interesting, this coincidental, really have happened purely by chance? Is it possible for this to be just a coincidence? Or is it something more? Was I fated to find these things the day I have all my hopes of ever seeing David Tennant as Hamlet shatter, perhaps to cheer me up? Or is, as I previously suspected, merely chance?
It's another moment I find myself struggling between two completely different sides of myself. My mother is the world's greatest skeptic. We call her the "disenchantress" and obviously, as most parents do to their children, she's influenced me in this way. I'm highly skeptical about somethings, but then there's also the other side of me. I'm not sure if it comes from my Dad, or if it's just me, but I also have a tendency to want to believe in the unbelievable. When I was a kid I believed in fairies, now that I'm a teenager, I don't know what to believe. So many conflicting opinions around me, so many things I'm questioning, so many things I'm sure I can listen to.
As I said, this is most likely not something your average 16-year old should be handling. The question of fate, the way life works, it's something you should leave to some famous philosopher, or some high priest, or some kind of weird earthly God-like character. One sleepless 16-year-old should not be deciding this.
In the end, we may never know. And for the moment, I think I'm ok with that.
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
Squee! Torchwood! It's back, on TV only a week after they get it in the UK!! I swear, words can't possibly describe how excited I am for this, other then perhaps the words I used when Doctor Who started up again last March, but since I forgot to blog about that, this is really all I can say. SQUEE!!!!
And it's Spike from Buffy! Granted, I've only ever watched three episodes of Buffy in my entire life (one of them was the musical, very funny) but that's still exciting! I mean, him and Jack are kissing, how awesome is that? Although, they sort beat each other up right afterwards...but that's still cool too.
What really excites me about this scene though, because I'm a loser, is the camera angles. The way they've shot this has really improved since last season, if that clip is anything to go by. I love the bit where Jack and whoever that is are walking towards each other, just the camera shot is awesome.
And Ianto calls a cab! I don't know why that was cool, I like Ianto, so anything he gets to do is usually fun. He was horribly underused last season, just Cyberwoman, really, and the whole "you killed my girlfriend, now I'm going to snog you" thing from the finale. What was up with that anyway? I mean, we kind of already knew there was something going on between them with the whole "stopwatch" thing a few episodes before, but how do you go from having your girlfriend killed to snogging and quite possibly doing other things to the guy who killed her? Go figure. That's Torchwood.
Anyway, that's my fun Torchwood rant, and I would also like to point out that I mastered putting videos up! Yay! First a header, now a video, what will come next?
Sunday, January 13, 2008
The answer, my friends, is in fact, Insomnia. I couldn't sleep, simple as that, so I decided to make a banner for the blog, as opposed to just a title and description. And so, after about an hour or so of tinkering around in Photoshop, this is the result. Wootness.
I would like to point out that the cat, as featured in the banner, is my cousin Miriam's cat Luther, photoshoped to look blue. I was going to use a picture of me, but then realized that every picture I own of me isn't really worth looking at, and that It's probably not a good idea to post pictures of yourself on the internet.
So yeah, that's what's up with me right now. That, and I'm playing a prostitute in a play.
Oh yeah, did I mention that? I'm playing a prostitute. I'm playing a prostitute. I'm going to be on stage, in front of people, playing a prostitute. Yep, I'm playing a prostitute.
I figure if I keep repeating it to myself, it'll eventually sink in. I think I'm sort of in denial right now.
Enjoy the header folks,
Saturday, January 05, 2008
“If you could choose, Doctor, if you could choose who live and dies, that would make you a monster” – from the Doctor Who Christmas Special, “Voyage of the Damned”
Well. This is certainly an interesting debate. You know, it’s surprising it hasn’t come up before, like, in 1996 maybe?
Anyway, despite the fact that it’s older than it seems, the Doctor/Messiah debate is intriguing, a bit silly, I suppose, and a bit controversial, but still intriguing.
The definition of messiah, according to dictionary.com is “any expected deliverer,” any expected deliverer. It doesn’t mention what exactly is being delivered, to whom it is being delivered to, and who or what is doing the delivering. If you take it literally, the mailman, who regularly delivers mail to both innocent and non-innocent people alike, could be considered some sort of postage messiah. Same with the UPS person, the FedEx person, the newspaper person, and that neighbor down the road who always seems to get your mail because they live at the same number house as you, but on a different street. Whenever they knock on your door to give you your mail back, according to definition, they’re your messiah of lost mail.
So, if a messiah is someone who delivers things, what exactly could the Doctor be delivering, if he truly is a “messiah”. You could argue he’s delivering us from evil, I suppose, which would support the whole “Doctor=God” viewpoint. But then, he doesn’t really deliver us specifically, since he seems to have a habit of delivering various aliens from evil as well. The definition doesn’t say that it has to be the human race that is delivered though, so the argument is still technically valid. The Doctor is sort of the one who seems to save us from untold dangers every Christmas and beyond, if he were, of course, a real person.
However, if you’re using that argument, then there are quite a few other people you’d need to consider as possible messiahs. Superman, for example, regularly saves us from the evils of Lex Luther, the Toyman, and Bizarro. He’s a figure from above, who descends upon the Earth through unnatural means and ends up protecting us from evil. The amount of supernatural powers he possesses, strength, flight, heightened senses, boarder on Godlike as it is. How much more messiah like can you get?
Superheroes, it seems, have a habit of ending up in a messiah like position. As do-gooding, self-sacrificing, deliverers from evil, they seem to lend well to the idea. How many times have we read a comic book, seen a movie, or heard a story of a superhero giving up their last bit of energy, their last bit of life, to save the world? They call it a sacrifice for “the greater good” most of the time, but how is that different than a sacrifice to save the human race? There’s no difference, they mean the same thing. Yet when a superhero says “for the greater good,” it seems to cause much less of a stir than “for humankind”. When a superhero performs a self-sacrifice, they’re doing it for us, usually. Does that make them a messiah?
After all, even in Sailor Moon, people got hung from crosses:
And it wasn’t even those two that were called “the Messiah of Light.”
In the case of Doctor Who, what’s mainly being protested, is not necessarily the characterization, it’s the imagery. In the Christmas special, Voyage of the Damned, the Doctor ascends from the engine room to the bridge by being carried by robot angels.
Ok, so angels, yes, they are in fact religious. However, are there any evil robot angels in the Bible? I think not. I will admit, I’ve never read the Bible, but somehow, I’m pretty sure there’s a lack of evil robots.
The act of being lifted “to the heavens” by the angels-robots is not a religious act. In fact, in the episode, it’s more of an act of desperation than anything. The bridge has been locked up. The doors are dead-locked sealed (which, as we all know, means the sonic screwdriver is useless on it) and the walls are made of metal. Really, the only way he could possibly get up to steer the ship away from the Earth and save to the day, was to break through something. Which, as you can probably imagine, is fairly difficult to do with your bare hands. He may not be human, but unlike superman, he doesn’t have super strength. The only way he could manage it was to smash the wall down with something heavy, namely, two evil robots.
So he has his method of getting in, break down the door/wall/whatever with a few heavy robots. Simple. However, the bridge is above him, like way above him. He doesn’t have his TARDIS, he, again unlike superman, can’t fly, and I believe there’s a fair shortage of flying glass elevators, hover boards, or jetpacks in the engine room. However, what he does have is two heavy robots that can fly. Perfect. He takes the robots, who now answer to his command as he’s sort of the only person in the room still alive and he can shout, and orders them to fly him up and break him into the engine room. It works, he gets into the engine room, and we get to watch him pilot half the controls with his feet. Brilliant.
Now, did any of that have anything whatsoever to do with religion? I think not. He didn’t turn water into wine, he didn’t make bread and fish appear out of nowhere, he just broke into an engine room. It’s also important to note that he didn’t actually save everyone. By the end of the episode there were really only four people left alive. He wanted to save everyone, he was desperate to save everyone, but at the end we still had his frustrated and desperate “I can do anything!” line as he realizes that he can’t.
In the end, of course, it’s just a TV show. It’s just Russell T. Davies trying to tell a good story on Christmas, David Tennant trying to make a good performance on Christmas, and an audience trying to enjoy it all. I wasn’t offended, but then, I’m not Christian. I, as a Unitarian, agnostic, Doctor Who-obsessed teenager was not offended by it. However, if other people were, I’m all right with that. This is just my opinion.
I'd make a very bad God," - The Doctor, Boom Town
Thursday, January 03, 2008
So. Here we are then. Well, here you are, sitting in front of your computer, reading my blog. I, however, and sitting where I usually sit when I type up long, rambling entries, namely, in High School computer lab during chorus.
Ah yes, it's that time of year again. The time when nothing happens in chorus, after the holiday concert, but before the solo and ensemble one. Last year I was able to skip chorus every day straight for about two and a half months (January-late March) since I wasn't in the solo and ensemble concert. This year, since my name has apparently been put on the list of people who are interested, I might not be so lucky. But for the moment, I intend to enjoy this little bit of doing absolutely nothing during the day.
Ok...wow. The librarian just came in and shouted at someone for having gum. She seemed to appear out of nowhere...like she just suddenly sensed from miles away that someone in here had gum, and materialized out of nowhere. Sketchy.
Anyway, what I should be doing right now is starting my English paper. We have this assignment to read a "contemporary British Literature book" and write a paper exploring it's themes. It's due in rough draft form tomorrow. Unfortunately for me, I sort of forgot about the assignment, she gave it to us weeks ago, so not only have I not read a book, I have also not chosen a book, meaning I have a paper due tomorrow on a book I haven't read, know nothing about, and haven't even chosen.
What I think I'm going do though, is just write a paper of complete gibberish and gobbly gook for the rough draft, since I have to be in about three different places tonight, and write the paper over the weekend. She doesn't actually check the rough drafts, to see what they're about, she just walks around the room to make sure we all have one. That way, I'll have three days to read a book over the weekend, and I won't have to try and write a serious paper in the half and hour of free time I'm getting today. See how clever I am?
Of course, if I really was clever, I'd have chosen and read a book by now. Maybe I'll write about Harry Potter...that's contemporary and British. Hm...
Well, the librarian's just walked in and very pointedly told someone how to use something they already know how to use. Since that person's the one sitting next to me, I think it means she's onto me, and I should probably log off.
Happy New Year, everyone.