Friday, 27 February 2009

The dog was created specially for children. He is a god of frolic. - Henry Ward Beecher

Dad just sent me this poem, and i think it's pretty nice, so i thought i'd share it.

The Power of the Dog

There is sorrow enough in the natural way
From men and women to fill our day;
And when we are certain of sorrow in store,
Why do we always arrange for more?
Brothers and Sisters, I bid you beware
Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
Buy a pup and your money will buy
Love unflinching that cannot lie--
Perfect passion and worship fed
By a kick in the ribs or a pat on the head.
Nevertheless it is hardly fair
To risk your heart for a dog to tear.
When the fourteen years which Nature permits
Are closing in asthma, or tumour, or fits,
And the vet's unspoken prescription runs
To lethal chambers or loaded guns,
Then you will find--it's your own affair--'ve given your heart for a dog to tear.
When the body that lived at your single will,
With its whimper of welcome, is stilled (how still!);
When the spirit that answered your every mood
Is gone--wherever it goes--for good,
You will discover how much you care,
And will give your heart for the dog to tear.
We've sorrow enough in the natural way,
When it comes to burying Christian clay.
Our loves are not given, but only lent,
At compound interest of cent per cent.
Though it is not always the case, I believe,
That the longer we've kept 'em, the more do we grieve:
For, when debts are payable, right or wrong,
A short-time loan is as bad as a long--
So why in Heaven (before we are there)
Should we give our hearts to a dog to tear?

Yeah, Wilf was a god of frolic, no doubt.

Thursday, 26 February 2009

If you aren't in over your head, how do you know how tall you are?

Our difficulties of the moment must always be dealt with somehow, but our permanent difficulties are difficulties of every moment.
T. S. Eliot

So my friend killed himself this weekend, and the day after i found that out, my dog died. It's been a pretty shit week, but i'm getting through with Gatsby, Buffy, lots of green tea and hugs. Last week i watched this amazing film called Wristcutters: a love story, about where people go when they kill themselves. It's a really lovely film, and thinking about it is oddly comforting, because the characters become happier after their deaths, without any of that sitting on a cloud playing a harp type crap.
Anyway, i thought you might want to see the trailer. It's a hard to find film, never got a UK release, but it's amazing and has an awesome soundtrack and has Tom Waits and Will Arnett and Shannyn Sossamon in it. Enjoy.

This is the way the world ends, not with a bang, but a whimper.
T. S. Eliot

And just to make you guys smile, here's my favourite photo of wilf.

I hope you're all having a better week than i am.

Sunday, 15 February 2009

"God, am I like the rest after all?"

Every year, the thing that i look forward to most about Valentine's Day is the postsecret submissions for that week. There's always at least one that makes me cry, or smile, or both. Here are some of my favourites from this week.

I just found this F. Scott Fitzgerald quote, “I fell in love with her courage, her sincerity, and her flaming self respect. And it's these things I'd believe in, even if the whole world indulged in wild suspicions that she wasn't all she should be. I love her and it is the beginning of everything.”
The man could write love. Don't you wish that was written about you?

There's Part of me that really loves this one, and i know it's the geek part. If you can't tell, it's Oz and Willow from Buffy, and the lines are from the scene where he first asks her out. It's one of the sweetest scenes in the whole 7 series of the show, and it just made me smile.

I'm watching that episode tonight.

Saturday, 14 February 2009

"I quite admit that i adored you madly..."

Happy Valentine's Day, kiddywinks. I hope you're having a good one. I've spent the past four and a half hours of mine in the library, failing to write a very boring essay, but i'm not letting it get me down. I'm kind of embarrassed by how much i enjoy spending time in the library, especially when i'm not working on something i should be. It's just such a lovely, quiet, book-y place.
I'm also in a good mood because i have a valentine's day date for the first time in my life. Woop!
If you're not in the hallmark holiday spirit, have a look-see at these lovely A Softer World comics, they might make you smile. Remember to click to see them bigger.

And just to be a little more generic, here's my favourite sonnet. Say what you want about him, but that Shakespeare could write!

My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun;
Coral is far more red than her lips' red;
If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun;
If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head.
I have seen roses damasked, red and white,
But no such roses see I in her cheeks;
And in some perfumes is there more delight
Than in the breath that from my mistress reeks.
I love to hear her speak, yet well I know
That music hath a far more pleasing sound;
I grant I never saw a goddess go;
My mistress when she walks treads on the ground.
And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare
As any she belied with false compare.

Friday, 13 February 2009

“Looking good and dressing well is a necessity. Having a purpose in life is not.”

So i was lurking on again, as i am wont to do when i have essays due and seminars to go to and costumes to make and showers to have and really just feel like bathing in the glories of menswear design. It fascinates me, i don't know what it is. Anyway, there was a feature about new American menswear designers, and i felt that some of the images just had to be shared, for the stylistic good of the nation.

Taking style tips from these photos will make you better people. That's a fact.

This is a collection by Robert Geller. I love the suit on the left, and the fact that the designer's trousers are undone, but he still looks really cool and put together.

This is Andre Benjamin's label, Benjamin Bixby. Apparently he's influenced by comic book characters with nipped in waists and wide legs. I love the baker boy hat, very 1920s.

By far my favourite collection, Shipley and Halmos. I get that it's quite hipster, which is the look I'm most attracted to, but i mean really, it's just adorable, the perfect cut of the jeans, the checked shirts, and especially the little details like the fact that the model in the middle isn't wearing socks. I could write an ode to the pink bow tie alone. Sartorial Perfection.

Now go forth and re-create these looks. You will be happier, more fulfilled and cooler if you do. Trust me, I'm an English student.

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

I watched it last night and loved it. I hate that reviews have to be so short, there's so much more i wanted to say. There's a chance that this won't even get in to the Badger because it's too long, but oh well, i thought i'd share it here anyway.

By now, everyone knows the basic story; a boy is born old and grows younger, falls in love and has adventures, before ending up as a baby, cared for by his geriatric wife. People had their reservations, could Brad Pitt convince audiences that he was every age between ninety and nineteen? Could David Fincher pull off a beautiful, epic romance? Could Eric Roth, writer of Forest Gump, write a film that didn’t induce at least part of the audience to nausea? The answer, for the most part, is yes.
Because of his obvious attractiveness, Pitt is often sidelined as an actor. People overlook his talent and focus on his looks; in this film, with his beauty hidden under make-up and subtle but very effective CGI effects, his skill as an actor shines through. It can be no easy task for a 43 year old to play a 7 year old in an 80 year old’s body, but somehow he manages it, and the audience’s disbelief is suspended. You almost forget you’re watching one of the biggest stars in the world because you care so deeply for the character. When Benjamin reaches his teens, and the actor switches from Pitt to a child, going through stages of dementia as he dies of old age, you feel the switch as Cate Blanchett’s character Daisy must, that the recognition of the person you loved has gone, replaced by something almost unrecognisable.
David Fincher is without doubt an amazing director, but his previous films, Se7en, Fight Club, Panic Room, even Zodiac, have been more for the male side of the market. Critics have marked this film as a sign of him selling out, giving up his angry young man status in favour of glossy Hollywood adaptations, and certainly the ingredients are there. With two of the world’s biggest stars, a love story taking place over almost a century, and a little bit of magic, this was never going to be gritty filmmaking. But Fincher knows what he’s doing. He knows how to get a stellar performance out of Pitt, as witnessed in Se7en and Fight Club, and here is no exception. His trademark use of colour palette, grey for Panic Room, dirty yellow for Fight Club, is here a soft, very subtle sepia, which adds depth to the beautiful cinematography. The screenplay, which could easily have lapsed into saccharine schmaltz, instead relies on silences and well placed moments of humour to keep our interest.
There are downfalls, too much time is spent on the framing device, Cate Blanchett dying of old age, having Benjamin’s diary read to her by her daughter as an entirely unnecessary hurricane approaches, and the very last minute serves up a typical and undesired Hollywood happy ending, but apart from that it’s a beautiful film, well acted, well directed, and well worth watching.