Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Hunger Games Isn't Good.

The Hunger Games has so much potential. I keep wishing that it was written by someone else, someone who knows how to construct a sentence, preferably.



Now, don't get me wrong -- I'm not such a stickler for grammar that I believe you have to be technically perfect in prose. I would not enjoy literature, if that were the case. But to be a good writer, I truly believe that you must deeply understand the structures and systems of your language, and I don't think that Suzanne Collins does.

English teachers often say something along the lines of, "You can't break the rules until you know them." And they are right. It is not until you have a true grasp on grammar that you can stray from the rules and still be intelligible. To me, that is ultimately the most important rule for writers: be clear.

I am a very concise writer. My academic papers are never the required number of pages. Ever. You want 20 pages? I'm giving you 17. Max. I spend a lot of time carefully crafting each sentence so that I never have to say the same thing twice. Being grammatically correct allows me to get my point across in a simple, readable manner. There's no bull-shitting or rambling (I save that for my blog), just digestible information.


On the other hand,  I understand that being grammatically incorrect allows writers to develop their style and voice. Good writers can write technically terrible sentences and still get their point across, in a pretty way, no less. Fragments, for example, can be stylish and useful. I use them a lot myself. So does Suzanne Collins. But the problem is that her use of fragments is not stylish--it's sloppy. I frequently have to reread her paragraphs to figure out what it is she's trying to say. And that is one of my biggest aggravations with the trilogy: it is rushed and messy. It lacks so much.

The thing is, I actually really like the idea of The Hunger Games -- its plot and themes, and the dystopian setting, which is SO HOT RIGHT NOW (at least in my opinion). But that is why it is so utterly disappointing. I feel like a great idea has been wasted. And, perhaps more importantly, so has my time.

Yet, for some unknown reason (or because I liked the first movie), I'm finishing the series. I'm halfway through Mockingjay, and frustrated and disgusted enough to spend an hour writing this post (seriously, one hour), but alas, I persist. I can't wait until it's over.

Read this. It's much, much better.

The green light at the end of Daisy's dock. And also a couch.

Last weekend, Meredith and I built a mother-fucking couch. And when I say we built a couch, I mean that we literally built a couch. Note:



The instructions manual said it would take about 2-3 hours. By hour 4, we were hostile and sweating. We hated that mother-fucking couch. I was glad that I took on the project with Meredith of all people, because if I had done it with anyone else, I most likely would have cried and/or been punched. But, Mere is a pacifist. For example, one time, I slapped her in the face because I didn't like her ringtone. She didn't retaliate, and she's still my friend. There's more to that story. I hope. Sorry, Mere!



Anyway, there were times when we felt weak and abused. There were times when we thought we would never have a couch. That the end was near. Not the end of building, just the end. The end of EVERYTHING.


We became hopeless, yet we persevered. And finally, we had a 100% American-made couch. 100-mother-fucking-percent.

This is the American Dream.

On that note, get excited:


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Land of the Free

Since it was Memorial Day yesterday, Boo and I celebrated our freedom. I slept until 9:30 and then drank 3 cups of coffee while watching She's the Man on ABC Family. Boo celebrated by exploring the great outdoors.

Freedom. On a leash.

Okay, so before you judge me for putting my cat on a leash, consider the fact that he now lives in a basement apartment and can't reach any of the windows to look outside. He is a prisoner in his own home! The only solution was buying him a harness and a leash. Obviously.


Boo kept up with the military theme of the day by army crawling across my lawn. I think he was a little nervous.


After Boo's walk, I took one of my own (sans cat). One day he will be able to join me outside of the yard. And on that day, I will lose any amount of hope I had left.

Someone marry me.

Anyway, during my walk, I watched this couple place American flags along the Minute Man trail. It was a very patriotic day.

Freedom.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Just your typical Monday

Remember that time I went to go pick up a robotic mouse for my cat and ended up VIP at a Rancid concert?

video

That's pretty much the whole story. Well, I guess there's a little bit more. I was supposed to go to the gym, but then I heard about the robotic mouse and things got all fucked up. Mainly me.

I don't really know anything about Rancid, except for that I probably listened to them in high school at some point. I was a little worried I wasn't going to fit in since I was wearing a pencil skirt and a cardigan, but no one seemed to notice. Or, it could have been that I was just really, incredibly drunk. But listen, it's not my fault. The drinks were free.


And that's how people die. Mostly girls. They're like, "Yeah! Another vodka soda cran, please. YOLO!!!!!!!" And then they go throw up and cry in the bathroom. I didn't do that. I just did this:


I ended up eating pizza at 1 am in what I thought was Mission Hill. I asked some stranger, "Is this Mission Hill? Am I going to die?" They said no and no. But also if I were in Mission Hill, it probably wouldn't be the best idea to ask a stranger if I'm going to die. Then some kid started yelling the F-word (not fuck) so I hated everyone and vacated the premises.


I got into a cab and read my tweets and texts, and my cab driver said, "Miss, you're laughing by yourself." Right, right.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Animals Vs. Babies

People always want me to look at pictures of babies they know or have and it makes me really uncomfortable. Babies don't really do it for me. So, when you show me a picture of a baby you care about, you're not going to get the reaction you want. In fact, you'll probably get no reaction at all. And then you'll say something like, "Come on, how can you not think that's cute?" And I'll say: "very easily." I just don't care about babies, you guys. I just don't care.

CATS.

I was recently called a hypocrite because I'm always showing people pictures of my cat and asking for reaffirmation that he's good looking. But, the major difference between my cat and babies is that my cat is absolutely, 100%, without-a-question one of the best looking creatures on this earth. You can't really say that about a lot of babies. Especially newborns; they look like gross mini aliens.

Google search: "baby aliens"

Animals are a way better, and more affordable, investment. Babies are really expensive. Child birth is disgusting costly, especially if you don't have health insurance (live free or die!!!). And then you have to pay for their shit for like 18-infinity years. But cats, for example, are wicked cheap (unless you're worried about their emotional well-being because you moved into a tiny apartment with relatively no windows so you shower them with gifts and catnip every day).

DRUGS.

I saw a woman WALKING HER CHILD ON A LEASH the other day, and all I could think was, if you wanted to walk something on a leash, why didn't you just buy a dog? Or adopt one? Or take one from one of the homeless people in Harvard Square who a) have pets and b) beat them in public (by the way, is there anyone I can call about this?).


Consider this: a child may or may not like you, but a dog almost always will. Also, a dog is way cuter than a baby and you can cuddle with it. You don't have to worry about smothering it in the middle of the night because it will get up and walk away. Babies can't even walk! Yet. Or whatever. Anyway, dogs are better than babies is what I'm saying. Okay, so maybe your dog sucks. Well guess what? You can get rid of it and get a new one much more easily than a baby. You also can pick it out from the start.  You want a brown dog? You can have one! You can't necessarily have a brown baby unless you plan really carefully and sometimes that doesn't even work out (see: Michael Jackson).

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Election Time is Gay

I'm going to refrain from getting all political on everyone, but I'm sure, if you know me at all, you know my stance on gay marriage. On that note, this is one of the most absurd things I have ever seen:


How incredibly false, sensationalized, and gross is this headline? Journalism has become so pathetic and shameful (see: my Open Letter to ABC), and, unfortunately, I feel like it's getting worse and worse every day. How can anyone make an informed decision when the information they are getting is so ridiculously biased and inaccurate? No wonder our country is so polarized (read: inert).

Okay, so maybe I am going to get all political, but it's hard to help it. This time of year (election time) makes me so sad and scared. And sometimes hopeful. But mostly sad and scared.

Also, I'm not ready to eat jelly fish.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Dream Weaver

Tomorrow night, I will give my final presentation and be finished for this semester. And, this weekend, I'll move into my new apartment. Then, I will have a life again. Perhaps I'll even resume blogging as well. Who knows.

Until then, this is all I have the time and energy to say:

Last night, I had a dream that I had polio. I went to a witch doctor to see if she could cure me and, while I was there, she gave birth to a spider that hatched and became Margaret Cho dressed in a purple Snuggie.  The only part of this dream I can explain is the Snuggie, and that is because I recently found one in my apartment and proceeded to pimp that shit out on my couch for 4-6 hours.

P-I-M-P

On that note, whoever it is that left that Snuggie at my house, please reclaim it. Or maybe don't. I actually kind of love it (sad, but true).

Anyway, if you have any insights about the rest of that dream, please share. I'm pretty concerned for my mental health.

Adieu.

P.S. Thank you all SO much for offering to help me move!!!! See you on Saturday at 2 p.m.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Chi-Town

So, I'm in love with Chicago. It took about one hour of being there for me to come to that conclusion. The city is just absolutely gorgeous. It's clean and everyone is friendly. However, the friendliness is not something I'm used to, nor is it something I adopt. In fact, I involuntarily started talking shit to a White Sox fan on the street because the Red Sox just so happened to win that night. I don't know why I did it, especially since I'm normally talking shit about the Red Sox.

Some highlights from the trip:

1. Sluggers. This is maybe the best bar I've ever been to. Not only does it have a dueling piano bar, but more importantly, it also has batting cages and an arcade. Skee ball + beer = a dream come true. We need something like this in Boston. And yes, I know the Greatest Bar has skee ball machines, but the Greatest Bar is actually the Worst Fucking Bar, so it does not compare to Slugger's.


2. Cheap cabs. These also don't exist in Boston.

3. The art and architecture. We took an architecture tour, which was awesome. Our tour guide was brilliant and also quite talented. He played a little Chicago Blues for us during the tour. We also really loved the bean. We spent at least 30 minutes there taking photos of ourselves. Hipsters.

The fingerprints make it look like I have liver spots.

4. Garrett popcorn. This shit changed my life. I never thought I cared that much about popcorn. I also never thought I would ever want to eat cheese popcorn in general, let alone combined with caramel popcorn, but god was I wrong. So completely wrong. I want to eat it all day, every day.

Incredible edibles.

While pretty much everything about Chicago was amazing, there were of course a few setbacks (although I would not blame any of them on the city itself):

1. At Sluggers, the best bar ever, a guy came up to me while I was sitting at a table having a nice conversation with my friends. He grabbed my hands out of my lap and started talking to me. I couldn't hear what he was saying so I just said, "Yeah, they're really small," assuming that he was talking about my carni-like hands. (My friend once told me they would be perfect for "reaching into a ferris wheel and fixing it.") But apparently he was not commenting on my miniature hands; instead, he was checking to see if I was wearing a wedding ring. Obviously, I was not, so he tried pulling me to the dance floor, saying that since I'm not married, I have no excuse not to dance.  I could think of  approximately 1,000 reasons to not dance, but I just firmly told him "No." Actually, I shouted it in his face because he would not get the point. He kept grabbing my hands and trying to pull me toward him. Essentially, I was manHANDled. Finally, he left me alone but I still felt the need to duck and cover whenever he walked by.

2. Having to wait two hours for everyone to get ready. Although, this did result in the best picture I've ever taken of myself ever. Something you may not know about me is that I typically spend 2-3 minutes every day making weird faces in the bathroom mirror, so I had a lot of practice for this one:

This is not photo-shopped. This is raw talent.

3.  One night, while we were at dinner, I got up to use the bathroom and this blond woman, who looked like she could be a real housewife of the midwest, stopped me and said, "Could you get me some more butter?" No, ma'am, I cannot because I don't work here. But I can see how you would be confused since the waitstaff is all male and wearing vests and ties and I'm a petite girl in a fucking dress. So, sorry I won't be doing you any favors. And neither will butter. Boom.

Anyway, the whole time we were there, my friends and I were raving about how we want to live there someday. Some of my friends were so excited about Chicago that they started hating on Boston:

Friend (in regards to Great Chicago Fire and the resulting unity): I wish we had something to be proud of like that.
Me: We do. It's called the AMERICAN REVOLUTION.

Never forget.