Just a lot of little things on my mind:
· On Tuesday, I watched the numbers go down on TV along with most everyone else in my office and felt my stomach lurch downwards with it. I know what Bernanke did with the interest rates. I know the NASDAQ didn’t keep spiraling down. But my stomach doesn’t feel much calmer.
· I know campaigning is hard and all that, but why the hell weren’t Hillary Rodham Clinton, John McCain, and Barack Obama in DC to work on the stimulus package? Aren’t they still, you know, senators? It seems like a really important reason to take a break from sniping at each other to me.
· I’m getting really sick of the “he said/she said/my spouse can beat up your spouse” interaction between Obama and Clinton, and the coverage of same.
· It was distressing to see that Heath Ledger died, apparently by mixing way, way, way too many powerful pharmaceuticals together. I loved him in Brokeback Mountain and A Knight’s Tale. Only 28, with a young daughter and a movie about to come out! I hope at least that more awareness about things like male depression and drug interactions can come from this. I think I also understand better why respected, serious actors would take on comedic or action roles, just for a break.
· But I don’t want to visit his apartment building! I’ve been asked if I would by a couple of people. You know, I probably saw him. I’ve seen lots of actors in NYC and not known it until after the fact—they look like anyone else, though perhaps well-off and good-looking, with all that Hollywood makeup and magic washed off. I’d have been interested in a possible Ledger sighting when he was alive, but now it would be too little too late, and slightly creepy besides.
· I am reminded of my grandmother, whose response to a hurricane in Daytona about three years back was to check on “Dale” and make sure he was okay. Dale was not a friend or neighbor, but a statue of Dale Earnhardt by the Daytona Beach Speedway! My grandmother did not appreciate my mother’s pointing out that Dale himself was beyond such things.
· Is anyone else disappointed by American Idol? I was really hoping to see more good auditions and less, well, idiocy. Oh, well, NASCAR comes back next month. If Tony Stewart, Denny Hamlin, and Kyle Busch can’t make good things happen in a Toyota, you know it’s time for the big T to pack it up!
· Cloverfield is making people sick! It didn’t bother me that much, but I guess I’m used to that sort of camerawork. I thought that the amateurish style made it look more immediate and realistic. I thought the same way about the Blair Witch Project. But some people can’t take such things for an hour and a half on a big screen in surround sound, I guess. I can see that. I myself enjoyed the hell out of it, especially since I was walking out into the real, undestroyed New York City when it was over.
· My L’Ailee is, without a doubt, the toughest and bravest person I know. In my mental dictionary, “courage” is illustrated by her picture. She usually enjoys speculative, apocalyptic, questionably educational depictions of an Earth made unrecognizable right along with me. The Future Is Wild is always a favorite in our house (we love the Discovery Kids cartoon, too!), and images from Dougal Dixon’s charmingly illustrated After Man decorate her tiny shared cubicle. However, she found the History Channel’s Life After People triggering. The images of New York City in ruins got to her; the use of Chernobyl’s abandoned buildings to illustrate what happens when people aren’t around to maintain structures made her give up on it entirely. L’Ailee wasn’t personally affected by Chernobyl, TTG, but she did live in Russia when it occurred. Of course I turned it off and TiVoed Wednesday’s airing for myself. It was a bit surprising to me, though, to see her triggered like that, and then I was surprised at myself for feeling that way. I mean, she was there for 9/11. I was reminded that although we’ve shared so much, we really haven’t shared everything.
· Occasionally, I like bluegrass. (Speaking of things L’Ailee and I can’t share!) I really like bluegrass with modern lyrics. John Cowan’s Carla’s Got a New Tattoo qualifies. If you liked Brad Paisley’s “Hey, Mr. Policeman,” you’ll like this. I can’t stop singing it to myself!
· Always, always, baby pandas can make lots of things seem better. Little Fu Long (“Happy Dragon”!) was finally allowed to see his fans by his mother at the Vienna Zoo. He’s so much shyer than DC’s Tai Shan, a natural born celebrity animal, was as a baby, but very cute. He’s also got an interesting quirk—white toes! To think I used to believe that all pandas looked alike. :-)