Wednesday, July 20, 2005

A long post to make up for days and days of neglect ...

I feel compelled to start by saying something along the lines of why I haven't posted a blog entry since ... oh, whenever it was. I've been busy. Busy doing very blogworthy things ... well sort of what passes for blogworthy here at CBOP. But by now the blogworthy things have piled up, unblogged, to the point where I don't even know where I should begin or whether I should just skip them completely and move on.

For example, I went to see Charlie and The Chocolate Factory Friday afternoon (Mr. Pants and I both skived out of work early for it). I could write you a little review of the movie ... I liked it, despite a few flaws. For example, like Wordnerdy I didn't find the Willy-Wonka's-dad backstory terribly compelling. I suppose it was thrown in to explain why Wonka is weird and loves candy, but it wasn't necessary. Unlike Wordnerdy, however, I loved the over-the-top Oompa loompa dance numbers. I believe that all dance numbers should be over-the top--the more the better! Dance numbers are a bit surreal by their very nature--who (besides me) breaks into song and dance in the course of a day? So I say make 'em big and stylized! I thought the use of one guy (Deep Roy) playing all the Oompa Loompas added a brilliant freakiness to their scenes. I think he was my favorite character. Mr. Pants had issues with Johnny Depp's riffing a little on Michael Jackson in his Wonka portrayal, but I thought it made sense. Wonka's a freak. He's a bit off-putting. Are you going to regret bringing your children to him? What is up with that man? All in all, the whole movie was just plain fun to watch, except ...

... perhaps I could write a little rant (OK, not my first on this topic ...) about the damn little baby sitting right behind us loudly vocalizing his entire range of primitive baby emotions through the entire movie. (Warning: if you think that people with babies are a special class of citizen and should be revered and awarded special privileges for their astounding and miraculous ability to pop out offspring, please stop reading and go away.) PEOPLE! Taking a baby to a movie theater is a supremely anti-social act. C'mon, anyone who's ever been near a baby knows that they are incapable of being quiet for the duration of a movie. Taking something you know will make loud, unpredictable and uncontrollable noises into a room where quiet is essential is selfish and rude and demonstrates a complete disregard for one's fellow human beings. In our case, the mother of the loud little larva finally decided, about 10 minutes before the movie ended, to remove it from the premises. I hope that woman did not enjoy her theater-going experience, because she seriously diminished mine.

(Mr. Pants feels that since we went to a 4:30 pm show, we should expect to have our movie experience ruined by inconsiderate people and their spawn and therefore we have no right to complain. I disagree. I think it's just as abhorrent to ruin the experience of your fellow movie-goers at 4:30 pm as it is at 9:30 pm. I think Mr. Pants is soft on the babies-in-theaters question.)

I could also say a few words about funerals, because I had to go to one for my departed co-worker on Sunday. I don't want a funeral when I die. I don't want my body to be all made up with a fake expression of peace and repose and put out in an box for the express purpose of trying to make people cry. I don't see a need for a service because there will be no praying--I really hate that part of funerals (not as much as I hate it when functions and meetings in my place of employment are kicked off with a prayer, but I digress ...). My surviving family members should not be forced to endure a receiving line where people come by and feel they need to hug them or say something to them (at a particular time when it's very hard to know what to say). The receiving line was the worst part of my dad's funeral. When I die people should just use it as an excuse to have a party and drink a lot.

And of course, perhaps the most noteworthy event of this weekend, at least for some of us, was the release of Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince. I didn't go to the Midnight Madness thingie at the Regulator because it was at midnight. That's prime sleepin' time, my friends! I finally got my copy after dinner on Saturday night, and I was finally able to finish it Monday after work (I'm now re-reading it.) It would be too much work for me to expound on my entire range of thought about the book, and besides I don't want to spoil anything for anyone who hasn't read it yet. (I have already spoiled it for Mr. Pants--he has no intention of ever reading any of them, but he has seen the movies so far, so he has a vague idea of who everyone is.) But I do want to say something I've been wondering about all along: So what's the deal with Slytherin House? It seems that the whole purpose of it is to turn out Death Eaters ... seems a little contrary to the whole purpose of Hogwarts, doesn't it? I know that good needs evil, particularly in literature, but the whole setup strains my suspension of disbelief a bit. It seems a bit foolish to take all the nasty kids, sons and daughters of known Death Eaters and other meanies, and put them all together in the same house at school so they can form their little alliances and feed off of each other's evilness. Without Slytherin House and its denizens there wouldn't be much to any of the Harry Potter books, I know, but it still makes me stop and wonder every time I read one.

Anyway, I'd love to talk about HP some more with folks, but it would be most fun if there were beer involved ...

Oh yeah, and the house still needs a lot of painting ...

13 comments:

elsacapuntas said...

re: Charlie and the Chocolateness - word with the backstory. What is it with Tim Burton and his need to provide a childhood for his fucked up adults (How the Grinch Stole Xmas was even worse on this count).

re: Funerals - I totally agree that the current form of the American funeral is terrible. I went to my first funeral since I was 3 years old in February when my grandfather died (the first of my grandparents to pass away, interestingly). I thought the worst thing in the world was having to look at his face covered in an inch of weird looking makeup and pretend like the pungent scent of preservative chemicals wasn't more upsetting than the death itself. I think we all need viking funerals, where our dead bodies placed in boats, set on fire, and sent out to sea.

leff said...

Re: Slytherin.
They're not supposed to be so bad, I think. See the new potions teacher. He's a prat maybe, but not evil. I think he represents what Slytherin was before Voldemort. And since Hogwarts is all about tradition it'd be difficult to just change it all. I mean, how do you reprogram a sorting hat?

georg said...

i think there are some shortcomings to the way Rowling's dealt with the 4 houses. but mostly agree that Slytherin's place in the wizarding universe is more complex/complicated than just "the bad guys."
definitely agree on the 'talking about harry potter over beer' idea

wordnerdy said...

yes! i always want to talk about harry potter! and i agree with georg--slytherins are supposed to be uber-ambitious and maybe a litlte ruthless, but that doesn't necessarily translate to evil.

also, i didn't mean to imply that i didn't like the dance numbers. they were very silly and entertaining and i was pleased they used roald dahl's lyrics. i just thought they were a little over-the-top at points.

Lisa B. said...

yes, they were ... wonderfully over-the-top.

I guess what I'm saying about Slytherin, is that I know it's not SUPPOSED to be a death eater factory, but it is indeed a de facto death eater factory ... and has been (with the exception of Slughorn) since Tom Riddle's day. Therefore, it suspends my suspension of disbelief a bit to think that steps haven't been taken ... putting all the potential death eaters together like that is pretty retarded.

Anonymous said...

This is concerning the CBOP is dead party. This is a BYOB affair. Don't come to my house and expect to drink up my liquor. I don't care who's dead.

Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, and bring a paint brush.

Lisa B. said...

I'm assuming the above comments were posted by Mr. Pants ...

andrew said...

Is the paint brush for the house, or the post mortem make-up?

Lisa B. said...

For the house, I think--if he obeys my wishes I'll be out in the compost pile.

andrew said...

christ - i went to bed last night thinking about i put in that comment - pretty insensitive of me. Sorry. I will resolve to not be such an asswich in future.

Lisa B. said...

I took no offense ... I'm trying to figure out wht was in sensitive. Was it the implication that I'd need a lot of makeup to look good after I'm dead?

andrew said...

No the implication that your house needed painting...

No, seriously, that you had just been to your colleague's funeral and commented on the whole make-up thing. Then I made some joke about it. But if you didn't take offense that is fine. Phew!