Jan 30, 2012

Dead husbands

I need to watch more Indian films! 7 Khoon Maaf is the tale of a black widow.  A beautiful woman's husbands end up dead one after another.  It's a black comedy with loads of interesting supporting characters and some singing and some dancing.  What isn't to like?  I had a lot of fun with this film.  6/10.

Tough career

The First Year is a documentary that follows a handful of teachers just starting their career as teachers.  They all are charged with teaching disadvantaged youth in the LA school district.  It's eye-opening and troubling and an interesting look into a tough career. 5/10.

Jan 29, 2012


Things to Say to a Dead Man will break your heart a bit.  Written by the author about the death of her husband, the poems hit so many nerves -  grief, anger, acceptance.  It's incredible and hard to explain.  7/10.

Jan 28, 2012

Day dreamer

Jan 27, 2012

Face meltingly good

Homesick Texan's carnitas are ah-mazing.  Face-meltingly good!  I served them over fried plantains.


This lace hair accessory is a jaw dropper.

Jan 26, 2012

Chock full

Tabloid is a documentary that's chock full of crazy.  It's a roller coaster of crazy that ends in a totally unexpected place.  It's about a beauty queen who gained notoriety in the British tabloids for kidnapping her Mormon boyfriend.  I liked it's crazy angles but it did feel a bit exploitative in places.  I'm not very comfortable with interviewing crazy folks for entertainment.  However, where the film ends up is pretty amazing. 5/10.


420 Characters is a collection of stories the author wrote via facebook posts - posts limited by the 420 character limit.  The little story-lets range from ironic to tragic.  Each little piece has its own page and some illustrations are interspersed.  The illustrations didn't work at all for me but I loved the stories.  One of my faves was:

"They are closing the mine in two weeks, they say. Six days a week bumping down in the gondola, pecking out the rocks and hauling them back up, doing it again the next day for twenty-seven years, one cave-in, three thin raises, and a failed strike. Where am I going to go every day, what am I going to do with all that sunshine?"


Jan 25, 2012


Binoche, Italy, lots of conversation?  Sounded so up my alley.  It's about an author and a gallery owner who may or may not know eachother.  Certified Copy just confused and aggravated me.  I would suggest reading about the plot before watching it because it confused the heck out of me.  Even knowing the plot, I'm a bit annoyed. 

Question for the masses

So I am wondering where do people decide on what books or movies they are going to spend their time with.  Answers?

My own sources for books include my Goodreads feed, Nancy Pearl's podcast on KUOW, Bookrageous podcast, listening to reviews on NPR, the shelf at the library where librarians display the books they recommend (love that!), and friends.

For movies, I rely a lot of Netflix browsing and Filmspotting podcast.

They all give me loads to consider, but am I missing any great resources?

I will never stay

I get obsessive over this song.

Jan 24, 2012


Me You and Everyone We Know felt like a bit of a mess.  It focuses on several people seeking to make connections.  The film had some beautiful scenes - particularly with the kids in the film.  (i totally want to take home the little boy in the movie; he's adorable!)  Overall, it felt unsatisfying and jumbled.  4/10.  (Such a shame because I really like John Hawkes.)


Kind of love this headband.


I generally adore The Splendid Table on NPR but I recently listened to a podcast that had a segment on the Kitchen Tarot.  The comparisons of the major arcana to kitchen gadgets mostly just aggravated me.  The artwork looks pretty, but I just think that some interpretations are just silly and a bit trivial.  Definitely not my cup of tea.

(I don't read my tarot deck anymore but I think the symbolism and history is pretty amazing).

Jan 23, 2012


Boy-o and I took a glass class on Saturday and made witch balls.  When I get them back, I'll be sure to take a picture.  Most interesting parts?

- Molten glass handles like honey
- Watching the folks who were there to make elaborate pieces out of recycled glass and other materials
- Working in a hot hot room while it was all ice and slush outside

Just heard the awful news

Jan 22, 2012


Last Night = a depressing movie about lots of lovely looking people.  I only found one of the pairing effective; the other just fell flat.  Closer is the much much better film.  This one only gets 3/10.


The House at Riverton was my first book read in 2012, and it was a disappointment of a read.  I adored The Forgotten Garden.  It was a sprawling amazing read.  I picked up this novel hoping for more of the same.  Unfortunately, the story was pre-dict-able.  It's the story of two sisters who witnessed a young man's suicide at a society party.  The narration is done by the housemaid some 60 or so years later.  It sounds interesting but the author uses such heavy-handed foreshadowing that very little comes as a surprise.  My advice?  Skip this and read her second book.  3/10.

Jan 21, 2012


Outside the Planter Box - This time of year anything involving plants and green things is fascinating to me.

Jan 20, 2012

What is your damage, Heather?

(I am doing so much catch up reviews!  I am not this quick of a consumer of books and films.  Still catch ups must be done!)

Heathers is a slim little book that is all about the movie Heathers.  It looks at the film from so many different angles.  If you love that movie like I do, it's a fun read.  It was great to hear those lines and think about them a different way.


I Believe I can Fly ( flight of the frenchies). Trailer from sebastien montaz-rosset on Vimeo.


An Irish Country Village is pure comfort read.  It's the second in the series following a new doctor who is a bit out of his depth in a country practice.  Think All Things Great & Small but with people rather than animals.  It's sweet and undemanding of the reader.  Great cover art too!  A nice fluff read.  5/10.



Jan 19, 2012


Ruta something Rue by betsy1112004
Ruta something Rue, a photo by betsy1112004 on Flickr.

Another plant I would grow swaths of if it didn't leave my hands looking burnt.


Cleome rose queen II by KM Anderson
Cleome rose queen II, a photo by KM Anderson on Flickr.

Cleome is one of those gorgeous plants that I can't do. It makes me itch. If I had an abundance of space to work with, I would put a patch of it where I could look at it but not have to go near.


Learned about the Uncanny Valley today. So interesting.

Jan 18, 2012


I liked The Magician King better than the first book - The Magicians.  While the initial book introduced the reader to a fascinating world, this novel fleshed them out.  I most appreciated how Julia's character was developed.

I also love that actions in Fillory have consequences - permanent consequences.  That seems a bit too lacking in many fantasy novels.

Jan 17, 2012


Fascinating - Tape Generations.

Jan 16, 2012

Cheese, candy corn & babies

This Planet Money episode from December was too good to not share.  It's a podcast that I subscribe to that helps me feel smarter.  :)

Less than

The Sisters Brothers begins as a fairy tale, and I wish the ending had felt the same.  Two brothers on a quest who meet many strange and sometimes magical-seeming characters.  It happens to take place in the old west.  I liked it, but the fairy tale quality didn't hold steady through the entire novel.  The brothers' relationship felt real and tangible though.  6/10.


Stunning!  Love the tree pieces as well.