I finished Whispers Under Ground by Ben Aaronovitch. It was good, but I'm not sure these books are quite my genre -- I want less focus on complicated cases and just a touch more on interpersonal relationships and the process of learning magic. Maybe I should just read the fanfic? Anyway, my TV died over the weekend, so now the boy and I are spending our evenings listening to the audiobook of Midnight Riot, the first Rivers of London book, which is wryly and excellently performed by Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, who does all the accents and makes me wish they'd stripped out the unnecessary speech tags.
Currently... I still have Cary Elwes waiting for me, but first I'm catching up on fanfic (primarily Les Mis E/R, and Star Wars Finn/Poe) and various internet posts that've been accumulating on my Kindle.
I've watched four episodes of Chicago Typewriter, and I'm soooo confuuuuused. Is it past-lives or time travel? Or a mix of both? Is Yoo a manifestation of the spirit of the typewriter (in which case, am I shipping Han Se Joo/the typewriter o.O)? And did they only name Yoo that so they could use that Platters song "Only You (and You Alone)" in the soundtrack -- hilariously, I might add? What is going onnnn? (Please don't tell me!)
Also, it's a little painful watching him struggle with writer's block, when I too am in a slump. I keep shouting advice at him that I am not taking myself. ;-P
I also watched the 2-episode time-travel/undercover-as-a-eunuch drama, Splash Splash Love, about a high school student who runs away from her SAT exams and jumps through a puddle into drought-stricken Jeoseon, where her identity is immediately mistaken because apparently "high school senior" is a homophone for "eunuch" in Korean. It was cute but felt like a school play compared to Moonlight Drawn by Clouds, by which I mean they didn't manage to sell me on the world-building, and the relationships felt very rushed. And the age difference between the pairing bothered me. And (on an extremely shallow note) the actors weren't as pretty.
J and I have given up on My Girl (I'll finish it on my own) and switched to Master's Sun instead, which is a re-watch for me. Ghosts! Humour! Complicated backstories! Oh, my!
Mystery Queen and Chief Kim are both on hold this week.
My TV turned into a radio over the weekend, so our Parks & Recreation re-watch has stalled (though we did watch the Halloween episode of Brooklyn Nine Nine last night on my teeny laptop). Since I failed to buy a replacement over the weekend, I decided to explore the possibility of having my TV repaired after all and yesterday drove half an hour up the motorway and into Lower Hutt to the repair place.
I realise that to many of you, half an hour's drive sounds like nothing, but Wellington is very compact, and when I gave the repair guy my address, he said, "You're a long way from home." Heh.
Anyway, we have the rest of Parks and The Expanse s2 on DVD waiting for us, and Pru comes over to watch dramas with me once a week, so I'm going to have to resolve the issue somehow. I'd rather not watch stuff on my desktop, because it would involve reconfiguring my living room.
Ha ha ha ha ha. *sigh*
I had my first language exchange over the weekend. We talked for over two hours, in a mix of Korean and English, and we're meeting again tomorrow. I'm a little concerned that we want different things, but I guess we'll see how we go.
I've also downloaded Duolingo, now they offer Korean, and I'm working my way through that. It's fun and addictive (game-ification!), but I'm not sure I'm learning a great deal. I need to knuckle down and actually memorise some vocab.
And my classes start up again this evening.
The guy who used to fix my computer finally emailed me back (\o/) and said he's super busy atm, so I'm hanging in here, waiting until his time frees up enough that he can look at it. Which is 100% better than not having a plan.
...is sunny and warming up. I have some errands to run, and I think I'm going to bike out and have lunch with the boy. And then, of course, Kclass.
(I'm going to update this post with a Tumblr link later, if you're over there and willing to spread that.)
2. I felt very under the weather yesterday, and I'm not sure why? Maybe just a bad day. I can usually pick some kind of main cause or worsening factor, but I think yesterday was mostly just "you're chronically ill and you're going to have days like that sometimes". My planning format really came through, though - I did a couple of my most important things and let everything else go and went to bed early at least knowing that I did things to help myself long-term but that I was still listening to myself. Balance! It's a thing!
(Also working on forgiving myself when I don't do that, but that's what I'm in therapy for, in part.)
3. Wednesday Reading time!
( Books. )
On any given day, the pantheon of French Girls includes Bardot, Catherine Deneuve, Françoise Hardy, Jane Birkin, her daughters Charlotte Gainsbourg and Lou Doillon, and former Vogue Paris editor Carine Roitfeld. Coco Chanel, immortalized not so much as a young woman but as an elegant matriarch, retires nearby. They’re distinct both as fully realized people and as types—Bardot is fiery, Deneuve icy, Birkin carefree, Roitfeld edgy—but all are regularly brought in as evidence of the French Girl’s actuality.
Who is she? She’s intellectual, cool, and a bit of a romantic, but she doesn’t give her approval easily or smile too much. She might run around in black-tipped Chanel slingbacks, or barefoot if she’s on vacation. She has a signature perfume. She eats cheese without abandon and nurses a single glass of wine all night because she’s a master of reasonable indulgences. She’s almost always white, hetero, and thin, and you can only conjure her by willfully ignoring the many French women whose daily routines do not involve bicycling along the Seine in mini skirts with baguettes tucked under their arms.
But the French Girl’s influence is tangible. She makes money for big American drugstore chains, department stores, independent brands, book publishers, magazines, and digital media companies. She definitely has something to do with the fact that rosé, sales of which outpaced the rest of the wine market last year, has become so popular in the US.
The obsession has become a business, and in that sense, the French Girl is perfectly real.
Nothing, because I'm still not getting any sleep for more than two to four hours at a time, which gives me about an hour of usable consciousness each time I wake up, after which I cannot focus on anything more strenuous than, like, YouTube videos about how crayons are made, until I get another couple hours. Rinse. Repeat. I have a giant list of fannish things to do starting with "answer these emails from two weeks ago" and I haven't done any of it. I haven't worked on my Big Bang in two weeks. Argh.
What I'm Reading Now
( Champions #13, Doctor Strange #26, Invincible Iron Man #593, Peter Parker The Spectacular Spider-Man #5, X-Men Gold #14 )
What I'm Reading Next
See above, re: argh.
Love and Other Catastrophes (1996) - here's the trailer, but it's actually much more female-focused and f/f-friendly than the trailer suggests. Wikipedia's description starts:
The story revolves around University of Melbourne film studies students and roommates Mia (Frances O'Connor) and Alice (Alice Garner), each of whom is experiencing various upheavals. Mia and Alice have just moved into a trendy apartment but are in desperate need of a housemate. Mia's girlfriend Danni (Radha Mitchell) is keen to move in, but Mia fears commitment.This was Emma-Kate Croghan's first film out of film school at Melbourne University, and it has all the energy and indomitableness of a debut, plus an excellent cast.
Jalla! Jalla! (2000) - trailer (which I can only find dubbed into Italian, wtf?). This is the low-budget film of my heart.1
Wikipedia's plot outline:
Roro (Fares Fares) and Måns (Torkel Petersson), who are best friends, work at the park management and get to do all the shit jobs - clean up duck ponds and pick up dog poop. Roro's Swedish girlfriend Lisa (Tuva Novotny) wants to be introduced to his family but he refuses for a long time because of his Lebanese family traditions. When Roro finally decides to introduce Lisa to his family, he walks into the apartment full of relatives who are planning a marriage with the Lebanese girl Yasmine (Laleh Pourkarim).I ship Roro/Lisa, but also Roro/Måns, and I keep wanting to make a slash vid for it but haven't been able to find the right song. (Måns' storyline includes erectile dysfunction; at one point he makes Roro go into a sex shop and buy him a cock pump.)
The film is inventive and fun, and has oodles of driving energy and charm. Roro's family (played by the director's real family) is great, and it's all just really adorable.
Housebound (2014) - trailer. This is a brilliant local comedy horror movie directed by Gerard Johnstone (and it's another directorial debut, ha!). It has 97% on rottentomatoes. It's about a petty thief who's sentenced to six months' home detention in her mother's haunted house, and it's full of twists and creepy turns and hilarity and jumpscares. Tonally, it's along the lines of Shaun of the Dead and its ilk.
1 At post-get/together brunch, we each listed off the top of our heads five films that define us. Mine were:
- Out of Africa
- Captain America: The Winter Soldier
- Jalla! Jalla!
- Big Hero 6
- Unconditional Love (AKA Who Killed Victor Fox)
- Desperately Seeking Susan
I've been reading this series for the last week, on and off, and really enjoyed it.
Puppet on a String (38518 words) by kazvl
Fandom: Sherlock (TV)
Rating: Not Rated
Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Relationships: Mycroft Holmes/Greg Lestrade, Mycroft Holmes/Gregory Lestrade, Mycroft/Greg
Characters: Mycroft Holmes, Gregory Lestrade, Sherlock Holmes, OCs, Anthea
Additional Tags: references to drug abuse, case files
Series: Part 1 of Fire and Ice
"Afraid I'll embarrass you?" mocked Sherlock, looking up suddenly, his stare spearing Mycroft where he sat.
Sherlock was too thin, too dirty - it was always a bad sign when he neglected personal hygiene - and he looked as if he hadn't slept for a week.
"Oh, that ship sailed some years ago. You've been vocal enough about what you don't want. So tell me, brother dear, what is it you do want?"
"You to leave me the fuck alone," said Sherlock venomously.
Several heads turned. Mycroft ignored them. He took such incidents for granted when he was with Sherlock and had never cared what strangers thought - unless required to do so by his job.