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Friday, May 30, 2008

Play it again - putting together a perfect playlist

The other night I was surfing the web, trying to find out how to put a playlist on my blog. I found this wonderful website where all I had to do was type in the address of where my songs were stored. Apparently, after I put in the address and choose my 'tweaks', or 'custom' settings, I'd be able to copy the code and put it on my site - sounds really easy, huh?
Turns out it didn't work.
Surprise, surprise.

But, I did end up finding a site called "Playlist" that did exactly what I was looking for.
It's simple.
  1. Create an account
  2. Search for music
  3. Add to your playlist
  4. Click your playlist and generate code to add it whereever you want - even Facebook!
And, voila!
(you may also choose auto-play, but I chose not to since not everyone wants to go to a blog and hear music screaming at them. Some songs may be unavailable - the usual disclaimer type thing)



Click on the link to try it yourself - your playlist can be nearly any colour (if you check my sidebar, it's purple!)
Playlist.com


Thursday, May 29, 2008

Groundhogs (and such)

Okay, so this is an entirely random post. But, I am just overcome with warm and fuzzy feelings for this cute little buddy of mine (and somewhat proud of my touch-ups on these shots).
So, here is some random cuteness (and a dandelion - for no apparent reason).
I found out the formatting was a bit screwy, so I've corrected it.

Merging the mythological with the natural.

Jonathon Bowser
Born in Canada during the year of 1962, Jonathon Earl Bowser, of French, Scottish, English, and Chippewa Indian descent, has created a remarkable collection of art. Today we will focus on the series he calls "Mythic Naturalism"... in his words, "images looking for the mysterious poetry of which the natural world is made."

Amazingly, Jonathon did not begin painting until he reached the age of eighteen. It's hard to believe such a talent could be masked until he reached the age of adulthood.







This painting is called "Song of the Hummingbird Muses" - can't you just smell the soft scent of the honeysuckles? Do you hear the music? I think I do.














This painting is called "Blue Invariance" and is reminiscent of the European medieval era. In Bowser's words, the society "forgot how to remember what it had learned before". This painting depicts what we hope is true and real - the desire fordieval era when, knowledge; the quest for wisdom.
If it weren't for the mermaid fins, it would almost remind me (personally) of Demeter and Persephone.












The last painting we'll look at today is called "Parsival's Lament" and was dedicated to the memory of Lesley Bowser (1939-2003). "Parsival's Lament" depicts the complicated web of Creation and I suggest reading the legend on the artist's website (it is quite lengthly and I'm not going to butcher it by trying to shorten it). This is most definitely a powerful piece.
If you're as enchanted with Jonathon's work as I am, please visit his website to find more paintings (from his Mythic Naturalism and other series) as well as the great stories connected to these works.
Click here

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Junking Junk Jewellery

Hello, hello!

So, this week we take a look inside my jewellery box. Or rather, we actually put my jewellery in the box. Now, those who know me offline know that I rarely wear any jewellery. In fact, the only thing I ever really wear in terms of jewellery is my necklace (shown in the picture below - has been edited, since I am pretty sure no one wants to see a picture of my chest). Occasionally, I throw in a pair of earrings... oh... and my nosering doesn't come out, either. That's seriously it.


So, why do I own piles of jewellery? And, why is it scattered around my bedroom? Well, I have an excuse for owning the jewellery - people know I like pretty, funky things... so, people give me pretty, funky things. I don't have the heart to tell them I'll never wear it (okay, so whoever has given me jewellery and is reading this: sorry!). But, I've no excuse for letting the jewellery get scattered around my bedroom. So, as you're reading this, my jewellery (the majority of it anyway) is now sitting in little boxes, where it belongs.

As you can see, that's a lot of junk to be floating around a room:

.

Even my hair accessories were floating around, without a place... and, anyone who knows me will also know I never wear (except for the odd head-band) hair accessories. So, they all have a nice spot in the bathroom drawer now.


Doesn't this look a lot better than piles of jewellery laying around? I think so. In fact, I've been so disorganised, I've actually found more jewellery in my room since I organised what was in these pictures... so at the end of week 8, I will post a picture of all the extra stuff I found that I forgot I even had!


Tune in next week when I sort out my sinful selection of shoes.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Zoomquilt

Okay, this really doesn't need an introduction. Click where it says "click here to start", then click on the picture and pull your mouse forwards and backwards. It's so cool!




For more, please visit Zoomquilt.org (and at the bottom of the page, click "Zoomquilt II" for another sweet ride)

Monday, May 26, 2008

Poke - a production of Facebook, Pepsi, and Coke

The multinational Pepsi and Coca-Cola companies merged a few weeks ago, to recently emerge with the news they're producing a new soft drink. The new soft drink will be called "Poke".Inspired by the popular Facebook function, "Poke" will be targeted towards teenagers and young adults, with its new slogan: "Show your friends you care, give 'em a Poke".

We contacted Facebook about this matter, to which a representitive of the company replied: "We, at Facebook, arepleased with the recent merger between Coca-Cola and Pepsi. To promote this new product, we will be allowing Facebook users to notify their friends with a bottle of "Poke", or sent them a virtual case of "Poke" for $1 U.S.D.

And, for the parents who want in on this new fad? Pepsi and Coke will also be joining to produce "Diet Poke" - "So you can think you're cool with your kids"

This has been a public service announcement brought to you by R.A.N.G.E (Raving About Nothing Good... Ever)

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Blow it out your ass!

I'm still doing the care-giver to little gerbil buddy thing, so instead of one of my rants, I share with you a rant by George Carlin. I believe this goes without saying: not for children.


Saturday, May 24, 2008

The Skeleton Key

"The thing folks just don't understand about sacrifice... sometimes it's more of a trade."

Set in Louisiana, "The Skeleton Key" thrills and chills. Caroline Ellis (Kate Hudson) is a hospital aide from New Jersey who quits her New Orleans nursing job to become a live-in aide for Ben Devereaux, a stroke victim who's been rendered unable to speak, at a plantation located deep in the bayou.

When Caroline arrives at the plantation, she meets Violet Devereaux (Gena Rowlands), Ben's wife. Violet, an eccentric, seemingly cold woman, insists that no mirrors be brought in to the house, and gives Caroline a skeleton key which will open any door except for one - a room in the attic she claims she had never even been able to enter.

Concerned that Ben might be trying to give her a message and that Violet may be hiding something of importance, Caroline's curiousity overcomes her and she makes her way into the forbidden room where she stumbles upon the dark history of the house she is living in - a history filled with Hoodoo (not to be confused with Voodoo) and violence. At this point, the tapestry unravels and it becomes certain that Ben is not simply a stroke victim - Ben is in grave danger and must be saved. But, can Caroline put an end to what she doesn't believe in to begin with?

Watch and find out.


Friday, May 23, 2008

Touch-up drab photos like a pro!

I just got back from the vet with my gerbil... he should be okay - we found out he has a bit of an infection that will hopefully be cleared up by anti-biotics... poor little buddy. :-(
So, I still don't have a post prepared... but, I won't leave ya hangin'... instead, I'll tell you all the wonderful reasons you should give photoshop a try. Not just any photoshop, either... Corel Paint Shop Pro to be exact. The current version of Paint Shop Pro by Corel is version X2 - I use version X, so the pictures I'm using as examples were created by version X... but, from what I can see, there really isn't much difference between the versions.

With Corel Paint Shop Pro, you can do minor touch-ups on photos, like this:


Or, add some personality... like this:


Or, just totally mash things up... like this:


So, wanna paintshop like a pro? Click here to download a free trial. I don't, on my blog, condone pirating software, but a little birdy told me there are places to find serial codes if we happen to like software but have no money.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Taking a day off...

Okay, so we all know the artist of the week should be featured today. Well, I'm taking a day off today since I really can't think of who to write about (my mind isn't working too clearly today... I'm concerned my gerbil might be ill).
So, if you're an artist (photographer, painter, musician, etc) and would like to be featured in this spot... please send me a message at shadow.x.crystal@gmail.com and include some of your work.

I'll be back tomorrow with a Gotta-Get'em-Gadget for you all.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Come into my bedroom...

If there's one thing many of us have that we do NOT need, it's an abundance of junk. Being a pack-rat, I've definitely an abundance of junk. So, since I'm not likely to get picked for some show where they come in and tidy up your entire home (alas, my space is only messy - not dirty like the spaces picked up on those shows), and since I don't have the money to hire a maid, I've decided to de-clutter.

I'm a poor, starving university student... so, I live at home in a room that's half entertaining area, half bedroom. Unfortunately, I would be completely ashamed to have a friend wander into my "entertaining area". I'm an incredibly organised person and a complete 'neat-freak', so I'm really not sure how I let so much junk pile up - but I resolve to eliminate it... and when I resolve to do something, I do it.

So, over the next 8 weeks, I will be opening the doors to my bedroom and letting you, the reader, take a look at my progress (through pictures). To start, this week I leave you with the "before" pictures... which are extremely embarrassing for me to post. Next week, we jump right into "part 1"... and the fun starts.

(The Collage of Shame)

Hopeless? Not quite! Check back next week when I junk my collection of jewellery.

Weekly Breakdown
  • Junking Junk Jewellery
  • Sorting a Sinful Selection of Shoes
  • Cutting Clothing Clutter
  • Knocking out Knick-Knacks
  • Banishing boxes and books
  • Vanishing Videos, Clearing CD's & Displaced DVDs
  • What to do when it just won't Work
  • Fabulously Finished

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Badgers - all over the place & all up in your face!

I remember a time when my friends and I would sit around in a circle, laughing our little beatty red eyes out while watching strange animations that made absolutely no sense - all the while surrounded by a thick, hazy, gray cloud of...

Well, okay... so that was last night...

Anyway, one of those videos we used to watch was this lovely little gem I'm about to unload on you, the viewers. Possibly of much greater mention, the video I am posing afterwards - which was posted by some young brave soul on YouTube, is a live-action response... it's not flash, but it's most definitely fun and freaky.





If you liked the annoyingly amusing little badgers in the first flash video, please visit
Weebl's Stuff

If, however, you preferred the second video... it was posted to YouTube by someone who calls himself CoffeeSen... to give him a little love, click here

Monday, May 19, 2008

Garfield Gets Grafted

Police cars, ambulances, and fire trucks raced to the burnt remains of the Arbuckle house around roughly 3:00 A.M. last Monday. John Arbuckle was found in his backyard screaming "GARFIELD!" as he watched his voluptuous feline friend, carrying a blackened, crisp lasagna; a midnight snack, emerge from what once was their kitchen.

Garfield, plagued by a treacherous food addiction, commented to John, police, rescue workers, and other concerned on-lookers that he was ashamed of his eating disorder and the turn of events his uncontrollable hunger just caused. Garflield promised to seek help for his eating disorder, vowing to curb his appetite... after a long nap, of course.

Rescue workers temporarily lowered John's blood-pressure as they found Odie panting happily and wagging his tail, sitting on the end of the kitchen table - which was, remarkabley, still intact. Nermal, thank goodness, had been put into a box by Garfield and shipped to Antarctica just the afternoon before the incident, so he was not harmed by the fire. Also, in case you were wondering, Pookey was fine - Odie had buried him outside the night before.

Garfield had to receive skin grafts on his paws - he was not injured by the fire, but rather when he rescued the lasagna. When we questioned Garfield about his food addiction, he replied "I'll kick this stuff man, I'll kick it", but, unfortunately, we could see his fur was already stained with tomato sauce and grated chedder. We're rooting for ya, our furry feline friend. You can 'kick this stuff'.

This has been a public service announcement brought to you by R.A.N.G.E (Raving About Nothing Good... Ever)

(And, since some nice youngin' left this floating around on YouTube, you can enjoy a classic episode of Garfield and friends where Garfield is plagued by nightmares as a result of over-eating)

Sunday, May 18, 2008

A genetically modified nation: Frankenfoods - why?

Regardless of where you live, genetically modified food is an issue. GM food (as it will be referred to for the rest of the post... also referred to as genetically engineered) is food that has been injected with foreign genes so as to produce a desired effect. Arctic char (fish) genes, for example, are injected into strawberries so they can withstand colder temperatures. In some regions where food is scarce, gm foods may sound like a perfect solution (although it leads me to wonder why the GM corporations, such as Monsanto, are developing "terminator" seeds which die every year - doesn't that defeat the purpose?). But, are the long-term effects worth it? Well, that is hard to tell.

Since the genetic engineering of foods only really took off in 1982, there hasn't been a sufficient length of time to test for any ill effects that generally take a number of years to manifest (although it is now being thought that it's linked to far more allergies and behavioural problems in children). So why, in Canada, the United States, Australia, and other highly developed nations, are we eating questionable food? And, possibly more importantly, why, in UNDER-developed countries, are they being fed food that may (or may not... to be fair) cause more problems than it could solve? Are we really facing such a hunger crisis that we cannot find safer (fully tested) alternatives? Are we really so self-centred we won't face the REAL problem... unfair distribution? I fully believe there's enough food... it's just not getting distributed evenly.

(click picture to go to where I got it from)
If this is truly meant to aid our society, wouldn't the product - our food - be thoroughly tested for safety? Instead, they're figuring out ways to make seeds that only last for one crop... seeds that really do nothing at all to combat world hunger... but... they're doing it in the name of combating world hunger... and it seems to me that we're stupid enough to let them get away with it. It seems to me that we only care about what we're told... since truly knowing would actually involve work... and none of us want to do that, huh?

Personally, I think they're just trying to wipe out half the population... the half that can't afford to avoid the GM food... that solves our population crisis, doesn't it? It also gaurantees survival of the fittest. Yay... we've evolved so far that we can use science to express our lack of evolution.

Is there anything we can do about it? You bet there is... we can demand proper labeling... we can lobby our governments to stand up against these major corporations ('cause if you haven't figured out by now... gm food is just a way for corporations to make huge funds)... and if all else fails, we can do the research ourselves, only eating food we find to have no gm ingredients... and sharing that information with others (once I have a reasonable list, I'll post mine). After all, we just found out in Canada, with the denial of Bill C-517 (which would require labeling GM foods), our government is not going to do the work for us and keep us protected... they don't even believe we have the right to KNOW whether or not our food has been tampered with.

I leave you with a fantastic video about GM foods I found on YouTube by Dan (El Kabong) Sullivan... a brilliant parody of Neil Youngs "Rockin' in the Free World"


So, as I sign off to prepare dinner... I say: chew on that, will ya?

**I apologise if some of this rant was a bit hard to read through... I'm a bit enraged as I just fired off an e-mail to our Provincial representitive who e-mailed me to let me know he could not support Bill C-517... apparently labeling GM foods is too much work for the Minister who would be responsible**

***Updates*** - Videos of the Week will be about genetically modified foods... some will be pro, some will be against... I have no control, since it just goes by YouTube's channel.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Weekly Movie Review (Awakenings)


"How kind is it to give life, only to take it away?" - Dr. Sayer (Robin Williams), Awakenings

Based on a true story, "Awakenings" masterfully evokes every imaginable emotion one could possibly express. You'll feel inspired, you'll feel desperate; you'll laugh, you'll cry. You'll find it was worth every minute.

Starring Robin Williams as Dr. Malcolm Sayer, Robert De Niro as Leonard Lowe, and Julie Kavner as Eleanor Costello, "Awakenings" tells the story of a group of people who were striken with catatonia after a devestating outbreak of encephalitis.

Malcolm Sayer was a brilliant man... at least when it came to medicine. His personal life, however, suffered as he was terrified of human contact and awkward in his personal relationships. His work with the catatonia victims in his care, partnered with the support of Eleanor - a nurse in the ward -, however, changed things over time.

Dr. Sayer, inspired by the rehabilitating prospects of L-Dopa, a drug used for Parkinson's patients, begins to help his catatonia patients by adminstering this drug to Leonard Lowe, a man in his thirties who has been in a zombie-like state since his teenage years. Leonard miraculously awakens from his catatonic state, offering hope to the rest of the patients' families. Because of his success with Leonard, Dr. Sayer is given permission to test this drug on the rest of the patients in his care. Like Leonard, their recoveries were equally miraculous. Unfortunately, in the world of science and psychiatry, one can never be too sure of the long-term effects associated with drugs (which is why drugs are, I hope, more rigorously tested these days).


"Awakenings" was produced by Columbia Pictures Corporation in December, 1990

Friday, May 16, 2008

Gadget of the Week (Type Now)

For some reason, it was nearly impossible to find an interesting gadget this week. I did, however, StumbleUpon a site called TypeNow which offers a TON of fonts... and not just any fonts... fonts people actually would want to use! Popular fonts! So, rather than give a big long write-up no one really wants to read (since fonts are pretty self explanatory), I leave you a few sample images so you know what kind of fonts they offer, as well as a link to their site. These are zip files, so all you have to do is open the file and extract it into your fonts folder (generally C:/WINDOWS/Fonts).


Enjoy!





Like what you see? Want to download some of these fonts?

CLICK HERE

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Artist of the Week - Adriana Mullen

Adriana Mullen

Adriana Mullen is a freelance professional chef living in Watchung, New Jersey. As stated on her biography (available at her website), Adriana's skill for creating mouth-watering delicacies for the eyes and the soul, however, was sparked by a curiousity of photography to capture everything in her kitchen. Adriana's curiousity, she states on her biography, became a passion - which is highly evident in her work.

Adriana does not keep the tricks of the trade to herself. Although her skill and talent may be unique to her, Adriana offers (available under the "Articles" tab on her main site) two well-written documents highlighting the tips, tricks, and guidelines that help go towards being a good photographer.

I leave you now with some of the photographs from Adriana Mullen's collection - with the talent she has for photography and writing, we can be pretty confident her food tastes as lovely as it looks.

Tea and Tofu - to die for






Peaches and Honey - too pretty to eat!









Beautiful pairing of colours









Time for dessert!

If you like what you see and want to see more, please visit the artist at her website:
Adriana Mullen Photography

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

George Carlin is a God (Wave G'Bye to the Recipe of the Week)

Alright, another change... there will be no more vegetarian recipe of the week (unless I get a bunch of comments or emails asking me to bring back that feature). I look at it this way... I don't know how many of my readers are vegetarian (and I don't want to turn off you stinky, evil carnivores :-P) and I don't think people visiting an entertainment blog (which is where this appears to be going) are going to give a sweet shit about recipes. Personally, I ignore recipes unless they're extremely eye-catching (and since I'm no chef, that certainly won't be happening every week), or unless I'm flat out looking for a recipe... and this blog would be a rather strange place for someone to come looking for a recipe. So, we say goodbye to a not-so-hot idea.

I have no idea what Wednesday's feature will be now. So, unless I get a bunch of suggestions from people on what they'd like to see as a weekly feature... I'm leaving Wednesdays open for whatever I feel like posting. Thank you to all the readers who have been sticking with me so far - please continue to bear with me since there will likely be more changes - and please tell me if something is absolutely horrid and should go... I will not be offended!
Now, I leave you with my favourite video from the greatest comedian of all time:

George Carlin




Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Alright... so, made a few changes...

So, you've probably all noticed I changed my layout.. even though no one voted for that option. Yeah, I probably shouldn't have asked in the first place, so I apologise... but, after previewing layouts, I think this one makes the blog a lot easier to view, doesn't it? Now that I'm getting into the groove of all this blogging stuff, you'll probably see more changes soon. Ooo, and try out the side-bar piano... it's fun :-P

Fun and Freaky Flash Video (Foamy's Fat-kins Diet)

Okay, so if I had my way (which I could if I really wanted to risk driving everyone away), I would attach a "Neurotically Yours" video to every post I write. Jonathan Ian Mathers who created iLL WiLL PreSS, is the genius responsibly for "Neurotically Yours"... or, more importantly, the genuis responsibly for "Foamy"... and if you don't know who Foamy is, you will within seconds of hitting "play". I hope you all enjoy Foamy's rant as much as I did... and, for the sensitive types out there... there is a language warning... as in every second word. 'K, enjoy!


For more, please visit iLL WiLL PreSS

Monday, May 12, 2008

Teletubbies Arrested! *Fabulous News to Start Your Week with*

The Po-LaLa-Dipshit Centre of Speech Pathology has just cut their red-ribbon, opening its doors to the linguistically corrupt victims of children's television show "Teletubbies".
Former celebrities La-La, Tinky-Winky, Dipsy, and Po have been arrested by the language police for multiple accounts of butchering the English language and rendering small children incapable of uttering simple, clear sentences.

The former Teletubbies stars will work, alongside their verbally-challenged young fans, towards a brighter, better-educated America. We asked three-year-old Polly Pickles what she thought of the new rehabilitation centre, to which she replied: "la-laah". Yes, Polly... "la-laah", indeed.

We were unable to get any comment from the representatives of the language police, but it is rumoured they're keeping an eye out for the popular characters of children's television show "Boobah".

This has been a public service announcement brought to you by R.A.N.G.E (Raving About Nothing Good... Ever)

Weekly Rant (and updates)

First of all, updates:

Two people voted on last week's poll (don't I feel loved :-P) - one liked the layout the way it was, one said the banner had to go... I am in agreeance with the second voter. So, there is a new banner (still not sure how much I like it though, so if anyone really dislikes it... please comment and tell me so it can be done away with)! The videos this week, I thought so anyway, are pretty cute and off-beat... and also proof that nearly anything can be found on YouTube. I hope you all enjoy what this week has to offer.

Now, let's rant:

I am an ex-smoker. I quit smoking cigarettes three months ago (three months to this day, actually) and I do not intend to start again (and, being allergic, I think it's highly probable that I will not resume smoking cigarettes). I am not, however, an anti-smoker.

So many people, so easily distracted from issues of greater importance, have gone to great lengths to demonise cigarette-smokers. You can't smoke in restaurants; you can't smoke in bars; you can't smoke in church*, and you can't even smoke in your own home or car (at least not without being made to feel like a cold-blooded murderer). In many places, where people are stuck most (if not all) of the day, it is illegal to smoke. It is not, however, illegal to manufacture and sell cigarettes - as long as the government is earning huge funds from it. What's worse is even though smokers pay outrageous prices and insanely high taxes on cigarettes, at least in Canada, they're constantly told how everyones tax dollars are being wasted on treating diseases smokers "bring on themselves" (because the tobacco companies and governments hold no responsibility). Gee, so where does all the money taken from smokers go? I know! I suppose it would go to pay for the healthcare of alcoholics, over-eaters, under-eaters, or people who happened to become pregnant. For shame!

I believe there would be less "smoking-related illness" if there was less screaming about the dangers of smoking. The mind is a very powerful thing, so if you're constantly told you're going to get a big ol' nasty disease... and if you really believe that... it's probably going to happen! The message on cigarette packages should read more like: "An estimated 'x number of' people, through use of positive thinking, cured themselves of cancer this year. Twice as many, however, succombed to cancer as a result of constant negative reinforcement from cigarette labels". In fact, I'm willing to bet the number of 'smoking-related' deaths has gone up drastically since government and tobacco companies began pasting these death warrants on cigarette packages.

Keep something in mind... these "smoking-related" illnesses and deaths I keep mentioning? Yeah... a person, who has never smoked or lived with smokers in her or his entire life, who dies from lung cancer as a result of spending his or her entire life working in a chemical plant? Uh-huh, that person gets registered as having died from a "smoking-related" illness. And, all those chemicals listed on a cigarette package? Yeah... a lot of those chemicals are in the paper that cigarette is rolled in... and a lot more are added by tobacco companies... just to make sure we continue to smoke their brand. And... the huge-ass fines you get for illegally selling cigarettes? Yeah, those people are usually treated worse and fined more than people who sell heroin or crack... which proves that the only thing the government gives a sweet shit about is making money (surprise, surprise).

So, not only are tobacco companies and governments slowly killing smokers with cigarettes, leaving smokers to take the blame and look like a scourge on society (after all, smokers could decide not to smoke... much easier than the government could make it illegal or refuse to allow advertising.. since we all know the government can't be held reponsible for anything), they're fucking-well lying to us while they do it. All the while, the government is effectively turning us all against one another while they freely destroy everything else in our society, since we're too busy worrying about the ills of second-hand smoke.

Yeah, I'm bitter.

* for all of you who want to pounce on me for whining about not being able to smoke in church, I'm referring to a joke I'm certain some people will get... if you don't, I don't plan on explaining myself.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Weekly Movie Review (Palindromes)


"Palindromes", an aptly titled film written and directed by Todd Solondz, is a slightly surreal, well-crafted movie dealing with three issues no one ever really wants to think about: teenage pregnancy/sexuality, pedophilia, and abortion (viciously attacking both supporters and non-supporters alike).

The movie casts eight seperate actresses (and even an actor) to play the role of Aviva, a girl who has just barely entered puberty and desires nothing more than to have a living, breathing baby of her own. Of the people cast for the role of Aviva, who is not always called Aviva when going between characters (to add further confusion perhaps?), is Jennifer Jason Leigh, a stunning actress with an impressive filmography. This movie also casts Ellen Barkin who has played in hit movies "Ocean's Thirteen" and "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas".

Although this film has several fairly disturbing scenes involving pedophilia and under-aged sexuality. And, although this film happens to be extremely depressing from start to finish, reading the same beginning to end and ending to beginning, "Palindromes" captivates its audience with an astonishingly accurate (although admittedly audacious) depiction of society and its response to issues such as teen sexuality and abortion.

I post a preview, taken from YouTube, for you all to review. The "love" scene near the end of the preview is the kind of thing that made this movie hard for me to stomach. The creative casting, the slightly surreal feeling associated with the movie, and the willingness of the director to deal with such controversial material, however, is what makes this one of my favourite films. Fair warning, if you're a relatively conservative thinker, don't waste your time or bother yourself by watching this movie.


Friday, May 9, 2008

Gadget of the Week (Guerrilla Mail)

Two posts today, aren't you guys lucky? Actaully, I was just lazy yesterday.
:-P

Guerrilla Mail

Yeah... I know... wtf? I'll admit, it's got a horrible name. But, it rocks.

So... what is it?
  • It's disposable
  • It's temporary
  • It's incredibly sneaky
  • It's incredibly clever...
... it's e-mail???

Ever want to try out an online service, but didn't want to provide your personal information? No? Then don't bother reading any further...
If, however, you're like me and have grown sick and tired of checking a fake e-mail account that takes all too long to create (for the purpose of checking out a website or application), this is a gadget for you. Guerrilla Mail is a temporary e-mail service. You click a button, you're given an e-mail address that expires in 15 minutes, and all you have to do to check your mail is refresh your browser.
Of course, I recommend keeping this open in a seperate screen for simplicity's sake.
So, when you want to check out a website/service/application, you just input the e-mail address you were given by Guerrilla Mail and wait for the authorisation e-mail to come in... and what's super-cool about all of this is even if the site you signed up for takes a long time to send their verification e-mail, you can click "Give me 15 more minutes" for as long as it takes. No more fake hotmail accounts, yay!

Get on a site,
Get an idea,
Get curious,
Get GuerrilaMail
www.guerrillamail.com

Artist of the Week (Isobel Campbell)

Okay, so this is a day late... I didn't particularly feel like blogging yesterday and I wasn't smart enough to have had prepared a post in advance. Anyway, I now present to you:

Isobel Campbell

Born in Glasgow, Scotland on April 17th, 1976, Isobel Campbell is a singer, composer, and cellist. Isobel sings solo, but has also been a member of the Scottish band "Belle and Sebastian" and her own band, "The Gentle Waves" (the song "Falling from Grace" is featured in the movie "Pumpkin" which has an over-all fanatastic sound-track) . Also, Isobel has sung with Mark Lanegan , pairing his rough and gritty stylings with her soft whispers.


Although she may sound meek and mild the first time you hear her voice, you can quickly tell from listening to her music that she is a power-house - a tigress, ready to pounce. I'm not entirely sure how to describe her genre; she does not fall into any nicely pre-packaged group, but her sound is somewhat "folky". I suppose this means she would be labeled "indy".
No matter what can be said about a musician, words alone cannot make someone like an artist. So, I leave four of my favourite songs by her so you can listen for yourself and see what you think. :-)

**I take no responsibility for the content of these Videos as they were not created by me (except for "Black Mountain", in which case, I apologise for the dozens of pictures of fake flowers). This being said, "Ramblin' Man" is loaded with adult content, so do NOT watch around children!**

video
Black Mountain

Revolver
("Revolver" and "Time is Just the Same" are done with Eugene Kelly)

Time Is Just the Same

Ramblin' Man
(Can someone tell me if that's Misha Barton in the video???)