Friday, 27 May 2011

Analyzing Comedic Encounters

I've just been thinking about how I talk to comedians when I meet them. It's completely odd, now that I think of it. You adore their work and know about their lives for months, years even. Then when you meet them, they have no idea who you are. You snatch them for a photo, they sign what you wish, and in between, you try and discuss as much as you can with them about themselves, their favourite things, how you found them. It's love from an unprecedented person.

To paraphrase (as in, paraphrase a LOT cos I'm terrible with quotes) Joe Rogan, "It's an incredible amount of appreciation. And that's what gets addicting." I'll fix this later, it's from a Citizen Radio Interview recently posted. Near the end.

So I suppose it's fun for the artists when they have energy, but there have been times I've felt guilty. For example, when I saw Eddie Izzard, he had just performed for 2 and a half hours, 3 hours with intermission. I felt I had to be incredibly brief when I met him at 12 am because he looked like he was going to nod off any minute.

On the thread of photos, I think photo-bombing is rather disgraceful. To not talk to the person and pop your head in like you know the person is revolting. Though I have to admit, seeing my friend's Dad pop his college-aged head into a photo with a load of exhausted looking Ramones looked rather cool. You get the achieved result, but I think it's an invasion of privacy.

Then there's the people who want to solely touch celebrities. My Mum is friends with a member of the Royal Canadian Farce and she's told stories of people snatching at her walking at social events.

Anyways, I was just pondering: Why is it that we need photos and signatures? Why can't we just go up to them and chat? I can't picture simply talking for some reason. I suppose some people are just wanting to associate themselves with the fame too. For example, Martha Graham (creator of Modern Dance) was asked for her signature which she happily gave. But then the spectator said "Great! But who are you?" and she snatched it back with the bark of "Find out.". Rightfully so. Or perhaps it's because there's usually a good line of people behind you, wanting signatures, and to yabber with the comedian or musician or whatever of your choice would upset the others.

Why do you think people want their photos with celebrities? Is it due to the fame? Because of the great things they've done? The need to have something to do to keep your foot in the door? To have the memories?

Please comment what you think. I need feedback, otherwise I become mildly sad due to the fact that only 7 people read this, and only one or two of them read it consistently. There you go, I too am driven by some mild form of appreciation.

Julianna xoxo

Sunday, 22 May 2011

A Light-Hearted Look At Murder by Mark Watson

Another amazing engaging British book by someone who is funny and describes random situations. I love it.

This book is by one of my favourite comedians, Mark Watson. I love him for his shy, stalky, geeky, Bristolian logic. He's a great writer and a great comedian. And he wrote this book, which I am currently reading for the second time and loving. Thank you for lending it to me!

It's about a Hitler impersonator called Andreas falling in love with a 6 foot 8 woman, then ending up in jail. After being written to by Alexandra, a girl forced to live with her brother in London, doing a bland office job for a history TV channel, Andreas sends Alexandra all his memoirs. The catch is, they're all in German. The story is about her awkward social life, ongoing correspondence with him, translating the memoirs, all the while reading his incredibly obscure life story as to how he came to prison.

I highly recommend it. Anyways, like James May's book, I'm gonna write down the fancy words. Get ready for even more fancy words. Oh yeah.
Julianna xoxo

Saturday, 21 May 2011

I got a band!

I'm in a band now! Finally! It's pretty awesome, I must say. Fantastically teenaged, but they're talented.

The Band's Instruments (also our facebook fan page profile picture)

See, I've just joined a band with 4 other people. And they're all guys. I'm the only girl, but that's more than fine with me.

We're called Ragione, which means "reason" in Italian (fantastically angsty teenager-like band name), and we play every kind of music. But particularly pop/rock/hard rock/metal.  Anything within that range is the usual, but last gig they also sang a YouTube song called "Pink Fluffly Unicorns Jumping on Rainbows". So it's all really for the fun of it, we're not that serious. (Note: I wasn't at the gig cos I only officially joined today).

The band is made up of all nerds. This also makes me happy. We have...

The Drummer- My friend Chancellor. Metal head, but an absolute teddy bear. Huggable. We met at school, he recommended me for the band.
The Guitarist- Isaac. Only properly met him today, but I see him walking through the halls at school sometimes. We practice at his house, and his Dad is Steve Page of the Bare Naked Ladies (a Canadian band, not a strip club thing for those of you who don't know). This means we have access to a free recording studio at his cottage if need be (which I find insanely cool).
The Bassist- Jean-Marc. Unknown. Mysteriously missing due to setting up some sort of trailer or something. Not sure what he's like at all, but apparently he goes to another school.
The Singer- Watson. He has a full name, but he just likes to be called Watson. I went to school with him when he was a skinny first grader who was obsessed with raccoons, and now he's a big tall 9th grader obsessed with John Lennon. Interesting to see his progression from childhood to now. He and Isaac started the band in January-ish, then Chancellor joined in March, and then Jean-Marc joined in April.
The Keyboardist- Me. I joined today. Judgement Day, of all the days in the year. I also sing sometimes. Only girl, and at least a head shorter than everybody else.

The day began with the drummer being late to pick up my keyboard and carry it to Isaac's house with me. I expected Chancellor to be here by 11:15, but he still wasn't there by 11:27, so I went with the plug, lyrics, and an attachable pedal to the band practice place. There I met Isaac's Mum, and Isaac and I went back to my house to get the keyboard ourselves in utter silence. I was expecting for him to hold one end of the keyboard while I held the other (it's 3 feet long and somewhere between 10-20 pounds), but it turned out it was much easier if he just tucked it
under his arm. We joked how sunny it was for a Judgement Day, discussed the band, put the keyboard in the basement by the drum kit, and practice began within minutes. (In the time waiting, I played Rock and Roll Nerd on their fantastic upright piano in the living room. Gorgeous sound).

I'm rather impressed with the quality of it all. So many bands don't have it coordinated, but even though there were works in process, they were catchy as hell and you wanted to listen. Everything was on. Singing was muffled by the power of the drum set (which I was really startled by), but the whole thing sounded damn good. Isaac made up a damn good guitar riff, and when we jammed with improv, it was pretty amazing. It was a really good place, everybody supported each other's music. They even liked my songs. Really sweet.

Proper excited. Next Saturday, I meet the bassist. I'll type again.
Julianna xoxo


Sunday, 8 May 2011

Day 6 of Poetry: Self Reflection

Self Reflection. Reflect about your entire English class year in a poem or essay. 
Note: I squeezed in a Tim Minchin reference. 

Nothing ruins self-reflections like being graded
That is a well-established fact
I can never seem to give bad reviews, no matter what
I seem to like school, I've never had regrets nor wanted to go back
I've never lamented about essays, comments, actions, or grades
I'm sorry, I really don't have any complaints.

I'm content with what I've got.
Every time they ask "How you feel about the class and what you've done?"
I'm honestly enjoying the class
I'm just grateful to be out of Ms. Clark's room (though I don't mean to poke fun)

I've loved the cartoons and films, the academic analyzing,
The funny skits and challenging debates and discussions
And when the class gets far from perfect on a grammar test due to lack of practice
I think it's great that we decide the repercussions

I enjoy the class, I wouldn't change it if I could
Just please don't dock me marks
For saying the entire class was good

Julianna xoxo

Day 5 of Poetry


Gothic Paragraph:

Maria lay in her chamber, reading The Tell-Tale Heart. Like the murderer in the book, her heartbeat was faster than usual. The attic of the mansion which she was renting was chilled with the whisper of the wind, and she found it harder and harder to rationalize her fear.
Suddenly, the bed began to shake. Pictures fell off the walls, furniture fell. Then, in the centre of her room, appeared an apparition. Faintly green in colour, the ghost stood there, eternally stained with blood, mouth gaping.
Maria's mouth mirrored the ghoul as she screamed in terror, and the flickering lights shattered into darkness.

You Need Hands:

Describe a character's hands, the person is somewhere exotic, or out of your imagination. Describing what they're doing with their hands. Use a metaphor to say something about the place. Describe what you would ask this person about the place, and describe what they're doing with their hands.

The hands of the man are strong, pink as if cut off from circulation, although they are not. His pinky fingers oddly stray away from the ring fingers, as if trying to distance the 5th finger as far away as possible from the other fingers of his hand. They are skeletal, yet muscular. You can see the tendons of his hands, but you can't see the veins. Around his right wrist is an orange crumpled wristband, and around his left ring finger is a modest wedding ring. He's spread his fingers out across his knees as he leans forward, looking out across the seats of a theatre. The rows are seemingly never-ending, he sits on the edge of the stage staring out at them. The seats flank the theatre with a blue velvet sea. If I could ask him a question, I'd ask how he feels with the audience flooding the rows, encircling him with all those thousands of eyes. How does he not feel drowned? He brushes his hair off his face, but he does not drag them through his hair, as his hair is too thick with hair product to get his fingers out again without pain.

I am from:

I am from the bed of a zucchini plant
I am from cheese
I am from the red dream diary of my childhood
I am from the shelf in the living room
I am from Hello very much
I am from the small town where I met so many of my friends
I am from ginger snaps
I am from the flower shop
I am from the Skype calls across seas
I am from the Dirty Duck with a sense of anticipation

I was the last person on earth...

I was the last person on earth when the world started again. In fact, I was the last living thing in the universe. The big bang had gone full circle. Life, destruction, death. There were 400 organisms left in all of existence only 2 years ago. Then it thinned out, and I'm the last. The universe has begun to implode after exploding, and I am the eye of the storm. The last light to go out. The last grain of sand through the hour glass. Then, the whole universe regenerates. The history dies. I die. Everything dies. It all stops, then it all starts from the top. There's going to be a whole new world with new scientific principles. Different planets, different species. Different morals, different decisions. And no one will even know we were here.

Julianna xo

Day 4 of Poetry

Many entries today cos I leave things last minute!

3 wishes:

First, I would wish that I never had to pay for plane trips. This would allow me to travel a lot easier, and see tons of my friends & favourite live shows around the world. I could not be greedy and buy myself a massive house or anything like that, yet I would be a lot more happy. Perfect.

Secondly, I wish my community had Nuit Blanche monthly. The creative, free spirited vibe of the city comes to life that night, and it makes Toronto a better place.

Lastly, I would make it impossible for people to abuse power. This way, the world would have the ability to suffer enough to not make the world boring, but they would not be able to massacre 1000s of people in wars or mislead massive religious groups. It'd create the closest thing to perfect I can think of.

A story in 55 words or less (of course, I used up all 55... I can never make things short. *sigh*):

The duo ran towards the smoking saucer through the dark.
"Any survivors?" The mother asked.
The teenage son inspected the inside. "Just one, and it's injured."
The ship began to glow neon green, and the humans ran.
A beam of electricity shot through the air, and they turned to dust in the green man's silhouette.

5-8 line poem about a Tim Burton-related theme, or Tim Burton character or film.

Once upon time, there lived a tiny little boy on the top of the hill
Who was so very thin, you'd think he was ill
He lived with both sets of his grandparents, his Mum and his Dad
Eating nothing but cabbage soup, but he was never sad
For he had a dream of winning the prize
Of seeing the inside of the factory which had been hidden from his eyes
Then one lucky day, of all the people under the sun
Skinny, little Charlie Bucket won!

Julianna xo