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07 June 2015 @ 11:51 pm
Hoo, boy...  
Hot, hot weekend. Yesterday was in the low 90s (I ended the morning's 5-mile run right at 3.9 miles, because it was suddenly clear I was done). Today was 96o, and felt hotter because it was a little muggy. My bike ride went from aiming for about 24 miles to maybe 22 miles and then, "Nope—I have to quit right now, 1/3 mile before even the shortest distance." Ugh. Both days, it took me about an hour to recuperate from overheating, and by then it was 1:30-2pm.

In addition to the heat, today's ride featured a great blue heron, and a guy drafting off of me for over 6 miles without even asking (typical). Last weekend, I picked up a hitchiker along the parkway, but it wasn't the usual cute ladybug or even a beetle. Instead, I looked down and saw yellow and black antenna and part of a body underneath my cyclometer, next to the 'Pause' button. This happened near my turnaround point, so I kept checking on the bug's location and thinking, "Don't press the pause button. Don't press the pause button" just so I wouldn't forget and get stung. The creature—a wasp—crawled on top of the cyclometer, got blown off onto the center bar and then closer to me. It was near my legs by then, and I've been stung there before, so I pulled over to let it escape. Whew!

Speaking of "Whew," I finally finished The Shining. It... did not thrill me. The foreshadowing seemed really heavy-handed, I hated how the female character was written, the five-year-old-boy often seemed more like 9 or 10, and there are times King really seems wedded to the Magical Negro stereotype (though that was my favorite character). I much preferred the sequel, Doctor Sleep, which had an unsettling spookiness about it that is more typical of King's son's writing.

With that out of the way, I started Egg and Spoon. This book has the feeling of several overlapping wisps of Russian folk tales, with wry interjections by the narrator. The style reminds me a bit of reckless_blues, and the rendering of Baba Yaga here is everything you could hope for and more. I'm almost halfway through already.

Movie-wise, we watched Three Days To Kill last weekend (more of a comedy than a thriller, and we loved the comedy parts), and we're now watching Paul. I was sure this last movie was PG-13, because it feels like that should be the audience. But no, it's rated R, thanks to a ton of misplaced cuss words—because heaven forbid a movie should get a PG-13 rating! Clearly, that would mean it was no good! Argh.

Now, courtesy of our son, have some links to a bizarrely funny set of toilet paper commercials: Sir Froggy, Daddy Gator, Birds, Conductor Randy, Great Grandpa Thaddeus, and Little Miss Puffytail. Good times. :)

bleodsweanbleodswean on June 8th, 2015 02:34 pm (UTC)
It's hot!!! And muggy! And stormy, too! Having the same experience up here in regards to being wiped out by this freakin' weird weather! Ah, NorCal June!

I enjoyed "Egg & Spoon". Do you know Maguire? He is one of my all-time faves and that is not one of his better titles, but it was worth the read.

It doesn't seem that "The Shining" has held up well. Parts of it are very, very scary, imo. I haven't read "Doctor Sleep"!

Stay comfy, K!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on June 8th, 2015 06:44 pm (UTC)
I worry about the thunderstorms, because those are not harmless in the mountains. Sometimes they start fires! :(

I've read "Wicked" and "The Ugly Stepsister" by Maguire, and enjoyed both a great deal. Though I would claim that these are definitely a form of fanfic-- for those who protest fanfic. ;) I'm really liking this one, partly because of the mood of the story. It flies by compared to "The Shining," at least, which I had to prod myself to finish, more out of obligation than because I actually wanted to.

I saw The Shining as a movie first, which spoils some of the plot. Plus, it was in Eugene, with an audience that found the whole movie campy and ridiculous instead of scary-- and that's how it struck me, too. I can never fully divorce myself from that experience.

Try Doctor Sleep! I recommend it! Though I'd recommend Joe Hill's books even more. :)
bleodsweanbleodswean on June 8th, 2015 07:01 pm (UTC)
We worry about that, too. ;)

All of his work is definitely derivative. But he is a master fairy tale spinner, unlike, say Robin McKinley. "Mirror, Mirror" is in my top five favourite books of all time. It's poetic, symbolic, and deeply dense. Just a gorgeous outing. You might like his tooth fairy book for younger readers.

Do you know Brom?

I think "Pet Semetery" was his finest work. And I love "Salem's Lot" but yeah...seeing the films first will wreck the storytelling finesse the guy has. They just can't bring King to the screen, big or small.

swirlsofblueswirlsofblue on June 8th, 2015 05:50 pm (UTC)
Eep, wasps are scary.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on June 8th, 2015 06:45 pm (UTC)
They are so nasty and quick, and their stings hurt worse than anything.

Take your eye off of them for a second, and they'll be on you. Ugh.
reckless_blues: And we never loved you very much.reckless_blues on June 9th, 2015 12:31 am (UTC)
Eyyyyy *fistbump*
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on June 9th, 2015 12:51 am (UTC)
It's completely true!
reckless_bluesreckless_blues on June 9th, 2015 03:09 am (UTC)
I've never heard of it! Have to pick up a copy.
cindytsuki_no_bara on June 9th, 2015 02:54 am (UTC)
those toilet paper ads are weirdly sad. (but mostly weird.) i feel the urge to move all the rubber duckies out of my bathroom, so they don't see anything they can't unsee.

i didn't know paul was rated r. granted, i only ever saw it on tv, but still. have you seen it before? what did you think?
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on June 9th, 2015 06:11 am (UTC)
Hey, how can you not love the Daddy Gator one of those? :D

"Paul" was funny and kind of sweet in a way, but it really, really needed to just be a PG-13 movie. The amount of bad language shoe-horned into it was cringeworthy-- things nobody would say, and that really seemed out of place. Awkward. :(
n3m3sis43n3m3sis43 on June 19th, 2015 12:44 am (UTC)
I really love King, but it's freaky going back and rereading his books and seeing all the Magical Negroes. Okay, dude. Time for a new trope!! Although to be fair, The Shining and The Talisman were both written forever ago. And I think the story Shawshank was based on is from the 80's?
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on June 19th, 2015 04:41 pm (UTC)
Three novels with that trope, though... Isn't that his primary use of people-of-color as major characters? I hope that's changed by now.
n3m3sis43n3m3sis43 on June 19th, 2015 04:45 pm (UTC)
Well, there was Detta/Odetta/Susannah in the Dark Tower series. I don't think she was a Magical Negro, but she had DID/multiple personalities which in my opinion was not well-executed and which he called "schizophrenia" even though he wrote the damn books in the 90s and should have known better.

Wait, why do I love Stephen King again? o_O
n3m3sis43n3m3sis43 on June 19th, 2015 04:46 pm (UTC)
To be fair, it's probably pretty hard to accurately portray a character with DID.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on June 19th, 2015 05:17 pm (UTC)
Even psychiatrists used to think that DID was associated with schizophrenia, at one time.

Now they've been separated out, which is good. There are plenty of people who have DID who are not remotely schizophrenic. In fact, a lot of time they fully process the rest of reality completely, apart from their alters not realizing that they are not the "real" identity of the person himself/herself.

So, I'd definitely give him a pass on that score. :D
n3m3sis43n3m3sis43 on June 19th, 2015 05:26 pm (UTC)
I know they did. But that time was not in the 90's when he introduced this character.

And you're right... DID is not a psychotic disorder. Some people with DID are even co-conscious, which means some or all of the alters are aware of each other and aware they are not the original personality.

Edited at 2015-06-19 05:27 pm (UTC)