February 28th, 2012

sunset samurai

Across the Cuckoo Clock Floor. (20)

Across the Nightingale Floor: Journey to Inuyama by Lian Hearn.

The bird on the scroll,
a line of ash on paper;
bleak calligraphy.

Once again, the Tales of the Otori mostly make me think about Legend of the Five Rings & Oriental Adventures for Dungeons & Dragons. I mean that in the best way; a novel that can make you start teasing apart the worldbuilding elements, scraping the ones you like best off & pocketing them to use yourself? That is the good stuff, right there. These are courtly tales of feudal samurai in a quasi-Japanese setting, & they hit the right notes. Are the warrior-lords in love with death? Check. Forces of honor & duty at war, driving the characters? You got it. Social & military forces of almost equal strength? Webs of intrigue & responsibility woven so thick that suicide seems like the only option? Love unrequited or unconsummated? Checks, all of them. I was a little bit worried about The Tribe, since the word "powers" had been thrown around-- but it doesn't get X-men at all in the least; The Tribe are her pseudo-ninjas. Ninjas & samurai & at the other end of the pyramid...Jews? The Hidden, with their odd & secret religion, with their persecution, are an interesting addition to the social strata. This & the previous book are collected in an omnibus, as are the next two-- I thought that the series would radically depart from this plot line, making each book a different snapshot of the Otori's history, but I think the next pair are sequels to Across the Nightingale Floor.

Deus Ex Nihilo.

Well if that picture isn't a snapshot of my interests, I don't know what is. Sitcoms & science-fantasy, you've got it! Hole in one. I don't know, I haven't really been doing anything, hence my sort of low radar profile. I read some books? Seriously, I don't know what to tell you. Saturday I made breakfast-- "steak" & eggs, if you count pot roast as steak, like I do-- & then went to the gym with fordmadoxfraud. We stayed for an hour & a half, & I only did two cardio sets, so that was a fairly rough & tumble session. Came home & then Jenny & I went on a date to the neighborhood nook, the Park Slope Ale House. Had a Twenty-First Amendment Bitter American which was alright but basically a session ale. I just don't like session ales, even if I only figure out that it was after the fact-- that is interesting, since I always figured I just felt cheated by the low alcohol content. Back at home we split a Porterhouse Oyster Stout, since Jenny had never had one, & then we had some Belgian-style ale, but I can't remember what. Stupid brain. We watched the episode of Fringe with two Astrids, "Making Angels." The moral of that story is yes, Jasika Nicole could totally support a show as the lead. Otherwise a perfectly fine hour of television, but nothing with teeth, really. Then Sunday was just me prepping for & running my Oubliette campaign. I came home to Jenny being awake & watching the Oscars, so I poured a little rye & fooled around online while they were on in the background, & hey! ranai & Joe won an Academy Award, that is pretty intense. Good for them. Last night was more of a whole lot of nothing; I went to the gym, we ate some pub food & watched How I Met Your Mother. I actually felt like this week's episode was...an episode, rather than the ghost of an episode. You know, the vacant hollow reflection of what the show used to be. This one at least went places with Barney & the twist with Marshall & Lily was a decent & fulfilling one. Jenny & closed out the night with...more reading!

Oscar the Grouch.

Gweneth Paltrow in Tom Ford.

Pros: Paltrow looks like she's from the Planet Krypton. It is awesome.
Cons: None. Haters to the left. Paltrow straight up murdered it.

Gweneth Paltrow in Tom Ford.

Pros: Gwen-Eth of the Fashion Council is right, the planet is doomed!
Cons: None. Seriously, a look so good I had to show it to you twice.

Esperanza Spalding in Prophetik.

Pros: I don't know who you are, but you look amazing. You play jazz I guess?
Cons: I don't know who you are.

Jessica Chastain in Alexander McQueen.

Pros: Q: What would it look like if you wore Dracula's curtains? A: Awesome.
Cons: Basically anyone would look good in this McQueen, though.

Anna Paquin in Emilio Pucci With Stephen Moyer.

Pros: Speaking of McQueen, this Emilio Pucci looks like it.
Cons: It isn't McQueen, though, is it? Nope.

Rooney Mara in Givenchy.

Pros: This is elegent with a hint of weirdo; I really like it.
Cons: Do we know anything about Rooney Mara? Do we like her, what is the verdict?

Maria Menounos in Johanna Johnson.

Pros: Maybe I just like that sort of sea foam green?
Cons: She's like an host for E or some paparazzi feeding entertainment show?

Zachary Quinto in Yves Saint Laurent.

Pros: Please Hammer Don't Hurt 'Em!
Cons: This is the dude who plays Spock looking fly as heck, what con is there?


Emma Stone in Chanel.

Pros: Oh Emma, in that sort of gothique split-mail, all classy & atmospheric.
Cons: Why oh why couldn't you have worn this to the red carpet?!

Elizabeth Banks at Vanity Fair in Chadwick Bell.

Pros: Wait, I think I am just a sucker for green, & feathers. I got peacocked!
Cons: At some point you have to worry that things are getting...costume.

Ginnifer Goodwin at Vanity Fair in Peter Som.

Pros: I'm a believer in short pixie hair & cinched waists.
Cons: It is a shame that television show you are on is not very good.

Lily Collins at Vanity Fair in Monique Lhuillier.

Pros: Someone basically took the "Invert" tool from MSPaint to the McQueen above?
Cons: You are a celebrity because of buzz, but maybe Mirror Mirror will rule?

Olga Kurylenko at Vanity Fair in Georges Hobeika.

Pros: Like a...sexy kimono?
Cons: Like a...sexy bathrobe?
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