Monthly Archives: February, 2006

Weight

Not mine, Jeanette Winterson’s. In the same series as Atwood’s Penelopiad, it’s the re-telling of Atlas and Herakles’ story (I was very glad she called him that, not Hercules, although she spelt it with a ‘c’. Anyway). It’s very different from Penelope’s story, because Winterson has put herself into the story to some extent, talking about the changes and boundaries and re-telling stories from her own perspective. The story is mostly told from Atlas’ point of view, although some is from Herakles, which was also interesting: he is totally the thug, which of course he was when you cut to the bone. Atlas came across as very gentle; Winterson gives him a curious back-story: living on Atlantis, giving a reason for the war against the gods….

It’s good. Sometimes I don’t really understand why people who write seemingly serious literature insist on having sex in their books, but there you go – guess I can’t have everything my way.

West Wing on the teev

We were very, very disappointed last week. The ABC has bought all the rights to West Wing, and they started showing it last Thursday. We had hoped beyond hope that it would be season 6 – we were pretty sure it wouldn’t be. We had reckoned that it would be season 1, which would be a bit painful but make a lot of sense. But no; we turned it on, and they started in something like season 4! Where is the sense in that? For the people who haven’t watched it before, they won’t really get it at all, and for people who are into it – why start there? I truly do not understand their thinking. Bah.

We did, of course, still watch it – again, that thing about watching with however many thousands of others being exciting.

Lord of the Flies

Well. It was a very interesting book, and I am very glad to have read it. It was also incredibly disturbing, which I guess is the point. I probably will see the movie at some stage (the b&w one, of course, not the modern American one). I ws right in assuming that the whole thing was set on the island – there was maybe one flashback from Ralph, and that was it. I think that was one of the coolest bits. It was so – laconic – and yet seemed to manage to get into their heads so brilliantly. I was impressed, anyway, and will have to remember to thank the people who forced me to read it.

How absolutely terrifying.

Lord of the Flies

I’ve just started reading it, because a bunch of teachers at school howled me down when I said I hadn’t read it, or even seen the movie (the b&w version, not the more modern American one, it has been insisted). Anyway, I knew there was a copy on my bookshelf in Adelaide, so I picked it up while I was there. The style is different from what I was expecting, and different from most other things I’ve read before. I’m wondering how much background of the boys will actually be given, or if he leaves it with them simply starting afresh on the island. The description is weird, but it’s good… certainly, I can see the island in my head.

Ocean's 11

We’re watching it at the moment. I love it. I still haven’t seen the original, which is meant to be fabulous. George Clooney is magnificent in it, and so is Brad Pitt. It’s so gloriously improbably, and so wonderfully glamourous.

Garth Nix

Sir Thursday is coming out on Wednesday!! I am so very, very excited! Hurrah!

And then it will be another year until Lady Friday… sigh.

Walking in the Rain

I walked in the rain today. Not by choice. It hailed on me. The things I do for my friends.

It was the launch for Kate’s Wishbone saga appearing on http://www.australianreader.com; there will be 13 parts, because some of the stories are a bit long so they are going to appear in two parts. It’s very exciting! She has had other stories in different websites, but none have actually made her their star. Hopefully this will mean more people reading it and heck – maybe she’ll get money one of these days.

She’s also had a couple of stories accepted by some radio station, which is also very cool.

I thought these things smelt bad… on the outside

I have frequently noticed this phenomenon: although we have The Empire Strikes Back on video, we are still watching it while it is on TV. I think it’s the idea that lots of people are watching it at the same time that makes it a special occasion. Almost like there is a sense of community – as though we are all together at the cinema – even though we are all watching it on our own screens. It’s the same as when you hear a favourite song on the radio, even though you own the album.

Mark Hamill is so bad. Harrison Ford is so good.

Funky tattoo

Being 36C today, it was a “show off your shoulder tat” day in the city. The best one I saw was a finely drawn spider crawling up a girl’s shoulder, on a very fine thread. It was cool. J thought it would be even more effective if the spider was smaller, since it would be more believable.

An Imaginary Life

I’d never read a David Malouf book before this; he always seemed a bit too much like Real Literature. However, Mum had to read this for one of her English subjects – Classics, maybe, actually – and she recommended it. So I borrowed it, and I’ve just read it. It’s Malouf’s fairly fabulous conception of what might have happened to Ovid after his exile from Rome.

It’s pretty weird, I’ve got to say: based on the idea that as a child Ovid encountered a feral child, and then in his place of exile encounters another (the same??) feral child, whom he attempts to ‘civilise’. It’s really about Ovid (re)discovering himself as a person, I guess, and as natural, separate from being a Roman citizen… ok so it’s pretty hard to explain. It’s also written in the present tense, which is an added dimension of interesting-ness. It is beautifully written, lots of sparse description (which is not an oxymoron, if you think about it), although oddly it also felt very un-described. Maybe this is what makes it Literature? And the fact that the entire story is told in just 150 pages?

Anyway, because it is only 150 pages long and it’s not exactly hard to read, it’s not like it’s a huge waste of time or brain space if you decide you didn’t like it after reading it.