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Ah, another Sunday Night

I have a glass of pretty fine Pinot Noir, am listening to the news, and am writing a little bit.

My arm still hurts - I'm avoiding any kind of lifting at all, but just normal activities will make it hurt, like picking up a 12-pack (note to try to lift those with left arm) or putting down a piece of paper (it's the twisting) or writing with a pen (stop that) or using the mouse (damn it) and so on and so forth. I went and got some Ben Gay patches which are nice and soothing and one of those little hand-held vibrating massage-y things. I suppose I have to go back to the doctor at some point.

I am still cranky at my webmistress at About, but when she sent a long lecture about things and what I need to do to make HER (paying) job easier, and how I need to stop "writing reviews" for my Call It Americana article (she told me when she asked me to do the bi-weekly article that I could choose my own topics, mind you), I just responded "Okay" and determined I wouldn't pick up anything new beyond what I already have in my queue and go from there; if media outlets send me un-requested discs I like, I'll review them at Epinions, where I have an account I don't use often enough. Bitch, gripe, moan, complain. I need to branch out more from About, anyway. However, next week I have due the Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash, Sunny Sweeney (who is REALLY good - and I am TOUGH on girl singers), and, if it arrives, a new Roy Orbison DVD; I also have a couple of kid's discs from "Farmer Jason," who is really the hardcore Americana lead singer of Jason & The Scorchers - they're both cute and really good. Then Bruce Robison & Kelly Willis's Christmas CD, Waylon Jennings' DVD, and a few others I haven't received yet.

Perhaps my next article will discuss FREEDOM of choice... it fits into the Americana theme... corporate radio making demands on artists... yeah... (The main reason I don't just tell her to kiss off is because I enjoy doing the reviews, and I REALLY like being able to hear some stuff I wouldn't get a chance to otherwise, since Phoenix is a backward crap town when it comes to hearing Americana music anywhere... bear in mind this "Guide to country music on the About.com network" once asked me "did Merle Haggard sing some song about swinging doors?" {if you know anything at all about country music, I'm sure that hurt you as much as it did me} - I figure I NEED to be there. Someone with some actual knowledge about the genre's history ought to be working there...)

I ate badly today; mostly potato chips and cookies. Did make a nice burger and snap peas for dinner, though. I have lost two pounds this month, though (as of last Thursday).

I am up to almost 1500 points in the "My Coke Rewards." I'm now aiming for only 2560 points (a lovely evening gown), because somehow, some way, they're already sold out of the 11,000-point laptops. I can't figure out how anyone could get to 11,000 points. It's taken me months to get to 1500 points. I obviously need to drink even more Diet Coke...

I want more weekend.

We went to see The Prestige yesterday - I truly enjoyed it. I spent about half the movie CERTAIN that David Bowie was playing Tesla, but the makeup was so good I wasn't sure - and I thought perhaps I would have HEARD if Bowie was in this film, but it turned out I was right. It was the eyes that did it. I looked at those eyes thought, "That HAS to be Bowie!" I think The Illusionist was a better film, although despite superficial similarities, they really aren't anything alike; but the acting was fine (especially impressed with Jackman's flexibility) and the makeup was AMAZING. I was amused that one of the few people actually using their own accent in the movie (at least of the leads) was Michael Caine, who almost never plays a character who uses his own "working-class" accent (not sure what part of England it actually belongs to, but it's not the BBC-standard he usually affects for most roles). The Australian was playing an American, the American was playing an Englishman (the same part of London the character of Rose and her family come from - I at least recognized THAT accent), etc. But a very enjoyable film. Lots of nice little twists (some predictable, but still good). I have to read the book now.

I did indeed watch Curse of the Fatal Death today. Bwah hah hah! It was particularly amusing in retrospect that the parody had a "Tenth Doctor" who was, in his own words, "young... sexy... lick-the-mirror handsome!" Jonathan Price plays a world-class, scenery-chewing Master. I wish I knew how to get screencaps off .avi files, 'cause some scenes were just begging to be made into icons.


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 23rd, 2006 06:36 am (UTC)
I think About.com needs you a good deal more than you need them. Don't you post to another review site? Anyway, good luck on dealing with your irritating editor.

I also think The Illusionist was a better film than The Prestige, and I had to think why. I decided that, while both films turned on magical trickery and subterfuge, The Illusionist had deeper and more compelling characters than The Prestige. In The Illusionist, the central question was whether or not the protagonist and his lady would be able to escape to live their lives together, and the stage magic was used as a psychological ploy to reach that end. In The Prestige, the plot turned mainly on two magicians ruthlessly one-upping one another, with an undercurrent of revenge. Emotionally speaking, that's not even in the same ballpark. Both movies employed clevery plot twists, but cleverness alone doesn't make a movie outstanding. I have a feeling that the book The Prestige may be better than the movie. Not that it was a bad movie, but I think I'd give it a C+ for effort.
Oct. 23rd, 2006 06:37 am (UTC)

Ooh, I discovered a new adjective! I obviously need to be more proofreadery. ;-P
Oct. 23rd, 2006 02:20 pm (UTC)
Send it to Steven Colbert. It might appear on The Word. "Clevery = things which are almost clever, like Republicans." 8-D
Oct. 23rd, 2006 02:19 pm (UTC)
Oh, I think so, too. Especially since today's country audience needs someplace to find out about real country music - they sure aren't hearing much of it on the radio. I used to also write for Take Country Back, but Lori stopped speaking to me and I've never discovered why... (maybe I'm just unlikeable).

Definitely The Illusionist was far deeper and more compelling emotionally; that and the addition of Paul Giamatti, who brought an enormous amount to the role and to the film - and speaking as someone who doesn't pick things up too quickly in movies, I'd pretty much figured out The Prestige about halfway through, but The Illusionist blindsided me. *g*

But I still enjoyed it.
Oct. 24th, 2006 04:15 am (UTC)
I could see the ending in The Illusionist coming, more or less, but I enjoyed it because of the romantic story. Several times during The Prestige I found myself wondering, But what is the point?
Oct. 24th, 2006 01:05 pm (UTC)
Well, I understood the driving need for vengeance from Angier, it was Borden's motivations that were dark for me, other than simple one-upsmanship; as Angier pointed out, he already had everything PLUS he was the better magician (if not showman); there was nothing he really had to gain from anything he did, and everything to lose.

I very much liked the touch of "real" magic, and wonder if the book tips it all the way into the realm of serious fantasy - the movie skirted that topic, even though it was extraordinarily important for the climax to work.
Oct. 23rd, 2006 03:13 pm (UTC)
So, you don't get paid for the About articles and you're behind on them... and she's giving you a hard time? And...uhm... tell me WHY you're doing them again? :/ Sorry... maybe I'm missing something here, but if she's a bitch, you're not getting money... have you thought about going to any magazines to see if they would actually pay you for what you are doing now? or if not, maybe you can do it for someone that would at least appreciate it more? Maybe radio stations or something? Seems like you are wasting your writing time on something that, well... I dunno, you could be getting appreciated for at least.

Curse of the Fatal Death is AWESOME! I even thought Rowan was somewhat hawt in that. Well, I loved in in Black Adder, so well, I'm pretty hopeless anywho. :/

Oct. 24th, 2006 01:06 am (UTC)
I get a LOT of appreciation from the people I review, plus what amounts to probably hundreds of dollars' worth of free music and other media (books, DVDs, etc.); which, so far, I haven't had to declare as income {knock wood}. I also get press passes to certain shows as well as the general prestige of being a pretty well-known journalist in Americana circles.

That's what I like about it. I'm also the ONLY writer at About who knows =anything= about Americana singers, groups, and music (and God knows I'm no historian!).

My intense laziness is what prevents me from going elsewhere. I'm extremely bad at marketing myself, and I don't have an agent to do it for me.

Oct. 24th, 2006 04:17 am (UTC)
You're not lazy, you're nervous. That's normal. Find out what magazines and newsletters accept music reviews and send them a few. Use the CDs you receive for About.com and Take Country Back as springboards for fullblown reviews and send them out using your online work as clips. You can do it.
Oct. 24th, 2006 01:07 pm (UTC)
You know, sometimes when I get the "you can do it" lectures from you, I wanna hold up a mirror, Miss!!! :-)

Oct. 24th, 2006 01:54 pm (UTC)
Well, no all agents are great either, but it really isn't THAT hard to get into magazines. Usually the info is online (editors) and it's usually just one well written letter nowadays. Before it was a big pain in the ass.

Hmmm...ok, well, then it's worth the pain at About. Does this web editor person handle EVERYTHING at about or just your particullar section? I.E. Do you HAVE to deal with her?
Oct. 25th, 2006 12:52 am (UTC)
I know, I know. I'm just very bad at it, that's all. That's why I'm still working in the mailroom, too. :-) I'm exceptionally good at hamstringing myself when it comes to moving up any ladder at all.

She's the Guide for the country music section. There are specific guides for each section you use at About.com - some are more extensive than others; some are also more informative. Since she IS the guide, yes, I have to deal with her - she's really a nice person, she's just... really freaking anal about a lot of things, most notably these links I was talking about. I've gotten along with her fine for almost six years now, after all.

Oct. 24th, 2006 01:33 am (UTC)
Too bad someone won't can Bitch!Woman and hire you to do her job. You ought to be looking for a paying reviewing gig, anyway. Have you tried No Depression?
Oct. 24th, 2006 02:04 am (UTC)
See my response to Mercy (above). I'm appalling at marketing myself, and if I don't get a positive response to an initial query, I'm very unlikely to try again (which is a very bad way to be, I know; I'm trying to get better). I am aware that I rather like being a smarty-pants and knowing more than the others I work with, whereas someplace like No Depression I would be unveiled as the amatuerish hack I fear I am...

I sometimes wonder, though, if I shouldn't approach About with a totally seperate Americana page - there is a separate folk page, after all - but they seem to be as insane-making as any other corporate bosses.

I'm still trying to re-work the short stories I had in the writing contest this year for possible submission somewhere. I'm so bad at getting going with things!
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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