Monday, August 31, 2009

Toddler TV

If you follow me on Twitter, then you know I write a lot about children's television.  This is because I have a 2 year old and I always watch what he watches.  Some shows I like and I don't mind watching.  Some I hate and will not let Bubs watch either.  He doesn't care.  Mostly he wants to watch Blue's Clues right now.
Recently I said this about Blue's Clues "I wonder what the audition process is like for Blue's Clues. "'Can you act stupidly interested in every freaking thing? Yes! You're hire.'"  This applies to all children's show.  The adults run around acting like they don't know basic skills taught to them by the age of 1 in order to teach the little ones those skills.  This is mildly amusing to me, but hilarious to the little one.
Examples of things I say about Blue's Clues include:

anniekawaii: We are watching Blue's Clues.
anniekawaii: I like Steve better than Joe. Joe has the eyebrow thing going on.
anniekawaii: I am also amused and slightly saddened I have opinions on Blue's Clues
anniekawaii: It's a letter. I bet it's from our friends.
anniekawaii: We just figured out Blue's Clue. Blue wants a party. Seriously, she couldn't have just said so.     
    My husband and I are of the opinion that Blue is a little bit of jerk, always making Steve or Joe run around looking for Clues.  And, frankly, if they can't figure out she invented "Blue's Clues" then I worry for them. Also the letter is always from our friends, always. Although it is better than Yo Gabba, Gabba.  That show just freaks me out.  Bubs definitely won't be watching that one. Other shows that freak me out include Wonder Pets and SuperWhy.  

    This is what I said about The Fresh Beat Band, a new Nickelodeon show.

    anniekawaii: I'm not sure how I feel about "The Fresh Beat Band." The tall one in yellow seems to be the weak link though.
    anniekawaii: I think "Imagination Movers" is still my favorite.
    anniekawaii: Okay, why are these children dressed exactly like these "teenagers"? 

    Because honestly, there were children dressed exactly like the band and I could not figure out why.  The music is very catchy though.  I like "Imagination Movers" a lot too.  They are funny, don't pretend to be stupid or less than grown-ups, and teach logical thinking.  Oh, and their music is really good.
    Some other favorites are "The Backyardigans," Elmo (but his voice makes me a little crazy), and "Word World," one of my favorites.  It's very educational and fun.  Let's build a word!  
    Anyway, children's television is very different from what I grew up on.  I watched Sesame Street, and Mister Rogers and Reading Rainbow, Sherry Lewis and Lambchop, and Sharon, Lois & Bram's Elephant Show.  All good shows, all gone except Sesame Street.  It seems like it was quieter back then, and not as flashy as some of these shows are.
    So I will leave you with the immortal:
    Skinamarinky dinky dink
    Skinamarinky doo
    I love you

    Skinamarinky dinky dink
    Skinamarinky doo
    I love you

    I love you in the morning
    and in the after noon
    I love you in the evening
    and underneath the moon

    Skinamarinky dinky dink
    Skinamarinky doo
    I love you

    Saturday, August 29, 2009

    Literary Tattoos

     I love tattoos and have a couple myself with more to come, but recently there was a slideshow on Twilight tattoos. And I like that series, I actually do (albeit less than I started out) but I would never tattoo Twilight anything on my body. But I've been thinking, is there any book or poem that I would tattoo on my body. I think the answer is no. I've considered Alice in Wonderland, Nancy Drew, e.e. cummings, but nothing really just sticks to me. The only thing is, and feel free to laugh, is that I wish I had gotten a small Sailor Moon tattoo instead of what I got my first time. Don't get me wrong I still like what I got but Sailor Moon has meant a lot to me over the years. And that goes to show that what is meaningful for one person will not be for someone else. So the same people tattooing Twilight on their bodies would probably laugh at me for a Sailor Moon tattoo. But in the end, I don't like the idea of having something in popular culture etched into my skin. Those things are often fleeting, subject to our whims and our age and our taste.


    Anyway, I found 2 communiteis that are dedicated to literary tattoos: Bookworms with Ink on LJ and Contrariwise. I like looking at what others would do that I probably wouldn't do myself. Some of them are really pretty and pretty cool.

    What do you think about literary tattoos?

    cross posted with The Little Bookworm


    Friday, August 28, 2009

    The Dark Crystal

    From IMDB:

    Another planet, another time. 1000 years ago the Dark Crystal was damaged by one of the Urskeks and an age of chaos began. Now the time of the great conjunction of the three suns is near. If the crystal is not healed now the control of the evil Skeksis will last forever. Jen the last of the Gelflings nearly exterminated by monsters controlled by the Skeksis starts his dangerous journey to find the missing shard of the crystal. Will he be able to heal the crystal and restore order on the planet? Written by Matthias Scheler

    It's been at least 20 years since I've seen this movie. The animation and puppetry are, of course, laughable in today's age of CGI but still impressive nonetheless. I remember being so scared of the Skeksis and so sad when the Master died. I don't know if I really understood the dual nature of the Skeksis and the Mystics. I know it's explained but I'm not sure if I grasped the full understanding back then. There was a lot I didn't remember. I remembered the landstriders but forgot that they died. I didn't remember that Kira got stabbed and I forgot how annoying the stupid little dog thing, Fizzgig, was. And the noise that the Skeksis Chamberliain made, I will never forget that. Anyway, it is still a beautiful little movie even if it is still a little scary. My husband, who had never seen it, asked if it really was a kid's movie. Yes it is, but the little boy got bored so maybe only for older kids. I hear there's a prequel in the works. I'd be intersted in seeing that. In fact, I wouldn't mind if they redid this one with better effects. I'm surprised they haven't.

    Thursday, August 27, 2009

    James and the Giant Peach

    After his parent's are killed by a charging rhinoceros, James goes to live with his two detestable aunts. They beat him and treat him horribly. One day he meets an old man who gives him some magic things to make his life better but James trips and loses them. The next day, the old peach tree grow a giant peach and James' adventure begins as he rolls away in the giant peach with the company of some giant insects.

    I'm a big Roald Dahl fan but oddly I'd never read James and the Giant Peach before. It was cute and had some nice insect lessons. The aunts are typical Dahl adults, abusive and stupid and they get theirs in the end (they are crushed by the giant peach). They weren't really in the book that long. It was a pretty straightforward adventure after that with a message about the usefulness of bugs. James and his friends encounter sharks and escape by tying a bunch of seagulls with webbing and flying off. Then they are attacked by "cloudmen" and escape from them and then get stuck on the Empire State Building in New York. I liked it although it's not my favorite Dahl book. I still like Matilda the best.

    I also watched the film version of James and the Giant Peach. It is a combination of live action and stop motion animation. The beginning and the end are live action. The aunts look so horrible and mean (they are) although they don't die like they do in the book. After the man gives James the crocodile tongues (the green things) and he goes into the peach, it becomes stop motion. All the insects look really cool. The story is about the same except that James is afraid of the rhino. There are no real sharks but one giant metal shark, but they trap the seagulls the same and fly high into the air. Instead of "cloudmen" they go somewhere cold and there are ghost pirates (one who looks like Jack Skellington), but they escape those and travel to New York. The aunts arrive in New York too and try to take James, but are prevented by the insects and taken away. I thought there'd be more songs since there are quite a few in the book, but there included some of them so it was cute. It was fairly faithful to the book and definitely had a Dahl feel to it. I liked it and so did my 2 year old so good job.

    cross posted with The Little Bookworm

    Wednesday, August 26, 2009

    Pride and Prejudice - BBC mini-series

    Well, this weekend I spent some a lot of time and watch the classic 1995 BBC mini-series of Pride and Prejudice with Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle. Oddly, I had never seen the whole thing, just bits and pieces. It is the most comprehensive version I've seen. It is basically the whole book with few changes. I enjoyed it. Colin Firth makes a most excellent Darcy and Jennifer Ehle is fun as Elizabeth Bennett. The thing that bothered me is that Jane is suppose to be prettier than Elizabeth, but personally I don't find Susannah Harker nearly as pretty as Jennifer Ehle. And everyone looked so old for their characters, especially Lydia (Julia Sawalha and yes I know she was like 25 at the time). And that bothered me.

    The scenery and houses were beautiful. And I love that they include everything just as described in the book. It's like the book gave to life. Everyone did a great job with their characters. The Bennett house was nicer than I had pictured and Mr. Collins was a little more oily. The costumes were wonderful. I love the dresses so much. It was a really pretty and authentic movie.

    I enjoyed Anna Chancellor's Miss Bingley. Lydia didn't aggravate me nearly as much as she usually does. But near the end I wanted to shake Mrs. Bennett and make her shut up. Her screeching make my ears bleed a little, I swear.
    Something I also found awkward was the ending. When they declare their love for each other, it was so matter of fact. Yes, I love you. Well, I love you. Let's walk on. I know that's what happens in the book. But I've been involved at this point for a long time, people, let's see some action, a kiss or something!

    Anyway, it was good and I will watch it again one day when I have a lot of time on my hands. (Ha!) But is it bad that I prefer the 2005 version and that Darcy and Elizabeth more? Because I do. I kept making comparisons between the two while I was watching and the romance tension is more believable between Keira Knightly and Matthew Macfadyen. I like Colin Firth, but his Darcy does not invite the kind of yuminess that Matthew Macfadyen does with his bedroom eyes and earnestness. *sigh*

    cross posted with The Little Bookworm

    Tuesday, August 25, 2009

    Pride and Prejudice - 2005

    I watched this one yesterday from about 1 pm to 8 pm. Yes, it took me 7 hours to finish a movie that is 2 hours long, but there was a lot going on. Anyway, I don't know why I'm telling you this, but kids and cars, you know? Something always needs to be fixed.

    I won't summarize because it is Pride and Prejudice. I love this version. It is beautiful shot and the director made some interesting choices as far as lighting and location. It is definitely an abbreviated version with some supporting characters left out (Mr. & Mrs. Hurst, the Philips, etc) but they aren't really necessary. The location for some scenes were changed too. Darcy proposes outside by a lake instead of in the parsonage. Wickham is meet outside and they talk about his relationship with Darcy outside under a tree instead of at a party playing cards. I didn't have a problem with any of that. The only thing I questioned was why Lizzie was always staring in a mirror? I get that it showed passage of time, but I felt there was a deeper meaning than that.

    The cast is perfect. I love Kiera Knightley's Lizzie, so proud and smart and quick-witted. And I love the little laugh when she first sees Pemberley. I love Matthew Macfadyen's Mr. Darcy. He is so awkward and delicious. Sigh. Rosamund Pike as Jane is so great. She is so beautiful and ethereal and sweet, like Jane ought to be. And I wanted to slap Lydia around a little. Jena Malone is good at playing annoying characters.

    So all in all, a beautiful movie with a great cast. It skips a lot for time, but still retains the essence of Pride and Prejudice.

    crossed posted with The Little Bookworm

    Wednesday, August 19, 2009

    O.M.G.

    We had a day from hell if hell is waiting in 2 doctor's waiting rooms and a hospital with a VERY ACTIVE 2 year old trying to get his stuff together for his tube surgery on Thursday + him having to get blood drawn and having to be stuck twice since he pulled the first one out while both of us are sobbing. It was plain ridiculous. The boy is not made for all that waiting and he was so tired and then they stuck him and he cried and cried and managed to pull the needle out of his arm so they had to stick his hand and he was crying and crying and I was trying to calm him down but ended up crying too which is unusual for me. It was not a good day yesterday.

    Monday, August 17, 2009

    Drive Away

    The other day Bubs and I went through a car wash. He was looking a little nervous, holding elephant up to his face. He was fine the first time it passed over us for the first rinse. When it did the second pass for the wash and the scrubbers went by... and they passed all the way behind us, he points straight ahead and says "Drive away. Drive away, Mommy, drive away."

    Friday, August 14, 2009

    Happy Belated Blogiversary!

    So my "blogiversary" has come and gone. It was August 7 and I just now remembered. I feel like this blog has very little direction. I'm fairly sure my life is boring so I don't feel like writing about it. I like writing about TV shows but nothing is on right now. I need to figure out exactly what I'm going for here. I mainly got this b/c I thought it would be fun. I just need to decide what to do with it.

    Thursday, August 13, 2009

    Boy's Room

    I realized that I talked a lot about repainting the boy's room and then showed the result. It came out very cute and he seems to like it. It's brighter and more fun than what he had before. Definitely a little boy's room instead of a nursery now.

    So here is one view taken from the doorway. My mom climbed a very high ladder to paint all the way up there. She did a good job. My aunt helped paint the blue and my mom and I did the squares which came out great.





    Here is facing his closet. With all his books, we had to get an extra bookcase but it looks cute.




    And here's his chalkboard wall (it says Hi!!) that he likes and I think is so cute.

    So good work team. This should last a little while.

    Saturday, August 8, 2009

    Sad Dream

    Last night I dreamt that BT had died (I don't remember how) and I was upset but keeping it together. But then one night I was watching TV with my friends and Bubs was playing and someone said something about sleeping with this guy and I said "I've only ever slept with BT" and I burst into tears because I wouldn't be able to do that again. And then I went to Bubs but he didn't really notice and no one knew what to do. Then it was the funeral and I told the boy to give Daddy a kiss and he did and I said say goodbye to Daddy and he said "Bye Daddy, S'morning" which means See you in the morning. Then we were leaving he said "I see Daddy" and I said he was gone now. And I woke up crying. It was so real.

    Thursday, August 6, 2009

    This morning

    This was my morning:
    1. My clock had been reset to an hour earlier so I got up at 5 thinking it was 6.
    2. It was down to 1 lane to take Ben to work.
    3. It was backed up again after I dropped Brady at daycare.
    4. which means I was stuck in 2 traffic jams.
    5. I was already late, but had to get gas.... Read More
    6. So I was 30 minutes late to work.
    7. Twitter is down.

    I'm hoping for a better afternoon.

    Wednesday, August 5, 2009

    Twitter Lesson - Direct Links

    If you want to give someone the exact link to a tweet, click on the time that you sent it on the bottom of your tweet (it shows up in Twitter proper on the web). This will lead you to the direct link to your Tweet. You can either right click on the time and "copy link location" or you can click on it and copy the link from your browser bar. Then if you are trying to link to someone or entering a giveaway and want to give the exact tweet, you can paste it into the comment box or whatever you are trying to do.

    Here's what the link will look like: http://twitter.com/anniekawaii/status/3145654488

    Tuesday, August 4, 2009

    Bride and Prejudice

    In this Bollywood-style adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, Lalita Bakshi meets William Darcy at a friend's wedding in her hometown in India. Darcy is uncomfortable and insulting and she does not like him. But his friend, Mr. Balraj, takes to her older sister, Jaya, and the two begin to fall in love. On a trip, Lalita meets Johnny Wickham and the two become very close while her younger sister Lakhi develops a crush on him.
    Meanwhile, a distant cousin, Mr. Kholi, arrives with the hope of finding a wife among Lalita and her sisters. When he is rejected he marries her friend, Chandra Lamba. Darcy and Lalita become close when she goes to LA to visit Chandra, but rejects his proposal based on his attitude and treatment of her sister. But when Lakhi runs off with Wickham, Darcy comes to her aid and Lalita realizes that first impression are not always the best.

    Ya'll I have to say how much I love this movie. It is such a beautiful colorful movie and Aishwarya Rai, who plays Lalita (the Elizabeth character) is so so beautiful. And Martin Henderson is a good foot-in-the-mouth Darcy. And Naveen Andrews (Sayid!!!!) is the Bingley character. My love for him knows no bounds and, since it has been so long since I have seen this movie, I didn't realize he was in it.

    It is a very clever movie though. The characters are transformed perfectly from English to Indian and I love how they managed to moderize it and keep it tradionaly at the same time. It is a little startling when they randomly burst into song esp. the dancing in the first major scence. But it is awesome and the music is incredible. This is a complete music see movie. I highly recommend it!

    *for the Everything Austen Challenge

    Cross-posted with The Little Bookworm

    Monday, August 3, 2009

    Good stuff on the Internet

    I like funny websites as most people do. But there are some I look at religiously everyday. So here they are in no particular order:

    1. TV Tropes: a website for "devices and conventions that a writer can reasonably rely on as being present in the audience members' minds and expectations. On the whole, tropes are not clich├ęs." Be careful. It's like the mafia, once you're in, it's hard to get out.

    2. Dlisted: For celebrity gossip with a side of bitchiness, this is it.

    3. Go Fug Yourself: When celebrity have trouble dressing themselves they can go fug themselves.

    4. Cake Wrecks: When "professional cakes go horribly wrong" so much awesome occurs.

    5. Cracked: lists of funny stuff

    6. 11 Points: ditto, but with 11 points always (This is thanks to Katy, my sister-in-law)

    Read and enjoy.