arisha: (myrna loy is awesome)
So my dad sometimes goes on this local TV show where a host and several guests (usually people in the media) sit around talking about issues in the news. Having noticed that women are only invited onto the show about 10% of the time, and the only non-white guest is invited on maybe once a year, my dad developed a habit of looking around at the others just before filming begins and announcing, "Well, I'm glad we're representing the full diversity of the community - from middle-aged white male to middle-aged white male." So he thinks it's his fault that they recently hired a second host, who is younger than middle-aged (although he's still white and male) ... and of course my dad hates him. haha! Apparently this new host comes from the Stephen Colbert school of interviewers, twisting your words around in a desperate attempt to make it sound like you're arguing in favour of something horrible. Keep trying, Dad! ^^;

I realize that lately I haven't been posting at all about what's actually going on in my life, lol. Yesterday my manager asked me how many shifts I want in the upcoming weeks and I had to remind him that I'm leaving in eight days! (Those of you who remember the fiasco surrounding my JLPT weekend may come to the conclusion that this is kind of in-character for him, haha. I really like him when he's not making a mess of my schedule!) I'm nervous of course, and still kind of panicked about getting everything done before I go, but I've also started getting really excited. :) I've just returned from one last doctor's appointment, I'm done all my shots and oral vaccines, I guess now I mainly just have to finish packing and finish writing our itinerary for the first week. I got my volunteer placement a little while ago - I'm going to be working in a daycare that's run by SOS Children's Villages, which is actually a child sponsorship organization! (You might have seen their TV commercials starring Mike Holmes.) So that should be interesting, and hopefully enjoyable. I always wish I could hang out with kids more often so I guess here's my chance! :) [livejournal.com profile] the_wykydtron told me last night that she thinks I'm going to return home speaking little kid Spanish, lol! Maybe! xD

Anyway, I'm off to bombard my volunteer coordinator with some more annoying questions. xD
arisha: (morning musume shabondama)
I am sick for like the third time this month, what is this this is ridiculous. :| And it's an actual unpleasant sort of sick, too, not just "wahaha I lost my voice!"

Book:
24. Return to Titanic, Robert D. Ballard with Michael Sweeney
Every so often I spend an afternoon reading about the Titanic, don't ask me why 'cause I don't know, and that is how I found out about this book. Robert D. Ballard was among those who first discovered the Titanic's current location, and this book covers his 2004 return to the site. To be honest, I'm not really surprised to see it only has three stars on Amazon.com. I thought the book would be more about the ship and what's been happening to it at the bottom of the ocean, and there was some of that of course, but there was also a lot of rehashing of info that everyone already knows, and a bunch of boring passages about the equipment they used to explore the ship, and there were definitely not enough pictures, especially since Ballard spends a large chunk of the book arguing for the need to preserve the ship and show it to people not through stolen artifacts in museums but through other, less intrusive methods.

Also, this book made me feel really guilty for enjoying that travelling Titanic museum exhibit as much as I did. :|

Movies, etc.:
53. Shoujo Kakumei Utena, 1997
Oh my god, I finished watching this anime like two weeks ago and I still have no idea what to say about it. It's really interesting and really elegantly animated, and while I agree with the reviewers who've said it could've been about ten episodes shorter, overall I did enjoy watching it. I think my main problem with it was that I felt so let down by the ending. I'd heard multiple times that the ending was supposed to be amazing, so maybe I just built it up too much. But I didn't feel like I was watching the grand conclusion to the series, I felt like I was watching just a regular episode, complete with a whole bunch of stuff that I didn't understand. :| Ugh, even after reading a whole bunch of fan interpretations of this series, there's still so much that I don't understand, and so yeah. I'm really not sure what to say about this one.

54. Watchmen, 2009
[livejournal.com profile] athena_crikey and [livejournal.com profile] the_wykydtron made me watch this, although they were also kind enough to tell me when to shield my eyes. haha, I don't know, I just don't like watching violence! I remember once when I was talking about how I thought V For Vendetta was a really violent movie, and all of my friends were like, "Wut." So yeah. x) Anyway anyway, I didn't hate this movie like I expected to, and it definitely takes place in a really interesting world. I liked Rorschach's little speech about how he couldn't ignore the darker deeds of humanity, but overall I'm kind of confused as to why fandom seems to love him so much. Also, this is a little random but: I think it was when we were watching 300 that [livejournal.com profile] the_wykydtron pointed out how in Hollywood sex scenes, the focus is always on the woman's face. OMG SO TRUE WITH THIS MOVIE. HELLO MALE GAZE, HOW ARE YOU?
arisha: (morning musume shabondama)
Stolen, complete with pretty formatting, from [livejournal.com profile] chroniclers:

♦ Take four books off your bookshelf
♦ Write the first sentence
♦ Write the last sentence on page fifty
♦ Write the second sentence on page one hundred
♦ Write the next to the last sentence on page one hundred fifty
♦ Write the final sentence of the book
♦ Let your friends guess what book it is


Read more... )

Man, I really feel I don't own many books that could be guessed like this!

In other news, I really hate this time of the year when the sun has set before I even leave for work.
arisha: (Default)
Last night I learned of the K-pop group Kara through a random comment someone made in a MoMusu forum, and today I have had their song "Wanna" on REPEAT. I have no idea why I love this song so much, but omg, I kinda do. (Even if the video uses that "hey let's go destroy my ex's stuff" trope that leaves such a bad taste in my mouth.)

Anyway, I am only letting myself get into K-pop if I can put on hold my desire to study Korean. (That writing system just seems like the coolest thing to me!) I'm supposed to be passing the JLPT in two months!!! And somehow keeping up with my Spanish as well, somehow ... Studying multiple languages was so much easier when I had classes in both of them. I was looking at the list of language tutors on the UVic web site today, but before I get a tutor I should probably decide what I'd want from them, haha. Because I mean, it's not like I have specific homework they could help me with or anything. :/ Or maybe I should just start making use of all those language-learning sites I've signed up for in the past, hahaha, oh man I'm so disorganized.

I did study some JLPT grammar yesterday, though! So. There's that. :) Oddly enough I've been doing better on this workbook's kanji pages than on its grammar pages, something I definitely did not expect! I am a grammar fangirl, hahaha.

In other news, I find this fandom!secret kind of sad but also amusing, because it's so different from my life! Pretty sure when [livejournal.com profile] the_wykydtron and I go see a play, as soon as intermission hits we're already discussing gender. Especially when we went to see "The Fantasticks," which was ... interesting. D:
arisha: (potc3 liz)
Oh my gosh you guys I actually finished a book!!

5. Rumors of Our Progress Have Been Greatly Exaggerated: Why Women's Lives Aren't Getting Any Easier -- and How We Can Make Real Progress for Ourselves and Our Daughters, Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney
I have two criticisms of this book. The first is that it includes at least two instances where Congresswoman Maloney declares the U.S. to be the best country in the world. This always grates on me, no matter who says it and no matter what country they're referring to (every country has its good and bad, let's just accept this and move on), but it seems especially silly when it comes at the end of a chapter in which she discusses the many ways in which the American health care system does not live up to the systems in place in other countries. My second criticism is that LGBT issues are completely ignored, which I confess I didn't even notice at first, but what a huge omission!

Other than that, I would definitely recommend the book. Each chapter includes information about the topic covered and what governments (well, mostly the U.S. government) have been doing regarding the topic, as well as stories about individual women and a list of different actions you can take if you want to help. It is a very U.S.-based book, so a lot of organizations included in these lists are only located in the U.S., and that was a little frustrating to me, but I guess it just means I'll have to do a bit of my own research! :p

And I suck at book reports, obviously, but this book was very interesting and I really liked it and it kind of makes me want to go and become an awesome politician like Congresswoman Maloney makes herself out to be. ;D
arisha: (I will lend you mine)
Three more movies:

9. City of Ember, 2008
This should actually be the first on the list, since I watched it on the plane from Tokyo to Vancouver, but I only just now have remembered to list it. xD; I actually really enjoyed this movie, it's of that family-friendly fantasy genre that I seem to love (see Journey to the Centre of the Earth 3-D xD; ), but afterwards when I was thinking about it I discovered a lot of plot holes. haha oh well, it kept me distracted for an hour and a half and that was really all I wanted. xD

SORRY GUYS, from here on this post is all politics. :P

10. Right America: Feeling Wronged - Some Voices From the Campaign Trail, 2009
forgive, sounds good )

11. Shut Up and Sing, 2006
forget, I don't think I could )

Also, I want to watch more documentaries. What are some documentaries I should watch? :D
arisha: (Default)
So through the Twilight post on Feministing I was introduced to the "Bechdel Rule," which requires that a movie must A) have two female characters B) who have a conversation C) about something that is not a man. I was reminded of this rule while A and I were watching Iron Man tonight - a movie that almost fulfills this rule, but makes me think there should be a fourth component to it, perhaps: D) without one of the characters insulting the other. (Man, Iron Man was a textbook case of how Hollywood treats fictional women, am I right or am I right. :/ )

Guys, this makes me want to start a meme! To participate, please go through your favourite movies and tell me which ones do and do not fulfill this rule. :D

My list, with the note that I am only counting female characters who are important enough that you would list them if you were making a list of characters in the movie:

After Life: Actually a pretty good number of female characters (Shiori, the woman who remembers her brother, the woman who collects flower petals, the girl who remembers her mother, the woman who lies about her age, Kyoko, the woman who remembers the earthquake, the woman who remembers meeting her boyfriend after the war, the secretary). Shiori and the girl who remembers her mother have two conversations (one about Disneyland and one about their parents), and the woman who remembers the earthquake shows Shiori how to make onigiri, so this one definitely passes.

Aladdin: ONE female character (Jasmine). COMPLETE AND UTTER FAIL!

Amadeus: Four female characters (Stanzi, Frau Weber, Katerina, Lorl). The closest thing to a conversation that any of them has with another is when Stanzi asks Lorl if the anonymous person is going to be paying her. So that's a pass, but kind of a pathetic one ...

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl: Five female characters, but I'm being a bit lenient here (Elizabeth, her servant lady, Annamaria, Scarlett, Giselle). Elizabeth and Annamaria shout at each other about how best to outrun the pirates, so technically it passes, but Annamaria is pretty eager to offer Elizabeth to the pirates which I think kind of breaks my addition to the rule.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest: Four female characters (Elizabeth, Tia Dalma, Scarlett, Giselle). I'm calling this a fail; Scarlett and Giselle exchange knowing glances but they're thinking about Jack, and when Tia Dalma talks to Elizabeth everyone is thinking about Jack, so yeah. That's a fail.

Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End: Seven female characters (Elizabeth, Tia Dalma, Mistress Ching, Scarlett, Giselle, Sao Feng's two women who have three minutes of screen time). Elizabeth talks to Tia Dalma but about Sao Feng. Mistress Ching asks Elizabeth for her orders? So I guess this passes, although like Amadeus, it's kind of pathetic ...

I feel like I'm forgetting a really obvious movie, but oh well that's enough for now. x) How do your favourite movies stand up??

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