Random Thoughts on Summer 2016 Movies

SUMMER!  SUMMER IS HERE!  WOOT HOOT AND HIGH FIVES!

Self swore, way back in January, that she would find joy again in watching movies. And she has! She has! Even when she was in venerable Oxford, UK, she managed to watch “X-Men: Apocalypse” and “Captain America: Civil War”! (Which is probably why she ran out of time before she could drop by the Ashmolean. But she is not a complete Philistine: she did spend time in the Bodleian, and took a one-day poetry workshop at Saint Hilde’s)

So, let’s see, here are the list of summer movies she’s seen so far:

  • Me Before You (Emilia Clarke meets Bridget Jones: Clarke is too adorable!)
  • The Shallows (Blake Lively and her cute butt and her long legs and her killer smile meet a totally focused great white in the wilds of — Latin America? Mexico? Where the pretty Texan encounters very chivalrous men. The only un-chivalrous man who comes within Blake’s orbit gets . . . umm, well, let’s just say: Payback’s a bitch)
  • Love & Friendship (Xavier Samuels: What is her life? AAAARGH. When you put a handsome man in period duds, it’s lights out. At least, as far as self is concerned)
  • X-Men: Apocalypse (Let us give credit where credit is due: the only reason self watches anymore is Evan Peters)
  • Captain America: Civil War (American snark rules! Especially in this series! YES!)

She will probably end up seeing Independence Day: Resurgence even though it has Liam. And mediocre reviews (Liam, you need a new agent! Pronto! Someone who can find you movies that convince people you can actually move!)

Of the above, the best ‘summer movie’ movie is, in self’s humble opinion, The Shallows. Any movie that can evoke hoots, laughter, and finally a triumphant YEEEES from a California audience has definitely earned its spot in the Best Summer Movie pantheon.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

WIND: Sylvain Landry – Week 46

Saw “The Taming of the Shrew” at the Globe this evening, accompanied by Joan McGavin.

What. A. Fantastic. Production. Self can’t even.

The setting was modernized to Ireland, 1916, and the Irish music was so lively and helped keep up the tempo of the production.

The actress who usually plays the lead was “indisposed,” so the role of Catherine/Kat was played by the understudy. Who was terrific.

At the intermission, self went outside to look at the view.

There was a stiff wind.

Good thing she remembered the Sylvain Landry Photo prompt this week: WIND.

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View From Behind the Globe Theatre: 1 June 2016. Self and Joan McGavin watched “The Taming of the Shrew.”

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Spare 2: Still in Oxford

Pictures tell their own story.

This week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge is SPARE.

Krista explains the thinking behind the prompt. She is writing about California’s Joshua Tree National Park:

Gazing into this distance, pleasantly spent from the exertion of the climb, I couldn’t help but feel at home in this spare landscape — despite the great differences in climate and altitude to where I live.

Self is still in Oxford. Spending Sunday with poet Jenny Lewis and her granddaughter Abigail and Abigail’s dad, Tom.

We went boating!

It was a lovely, overcast day on a tranquil river.

SO peaceful.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Sometimes You Just Gotta Have That Chocolate Milkshake

Have dear blog readers ever tasted a lukewarm chocolate milkshake?

(Self knows, right?)

It is a hot day in Oxford, UK. Everyone strolling around, including three tourists who are attracting attention for a (fake) loud quarrel — self is pretty clued-in now to what’s fake and what’s real. All you have to do, really, is look at the person’s face. The woman who is allegedly being wronged by her two male companions has a huge, shit-eating grin on her face. She has cropped, dyed-platinum-blonde hair. She has deep brown, leathery skin. She’s wearing blue jeans and a white tank top. This makes her stand out because most of the women self sees around Oxford are of two, maybe three types: young Asian women who are extremely thin, very stylish, and very low-key; young white women who wear sneakers, cigarette jeans, and muted sweaters; older white women who dress a bit eccentrically, in floppy hats, or voluminous, bright sweaters. The strange woman keeps screaming, at the top of her voice, ruining a pleasant afternoon: LEAVE ME ALONE! ASSHOLE!

Really, self hates the drama. This is on a tiny street, where everyone’s so quiet, they all jerk their heads up and look alarmed. If self were to be truly cynical about it, which she isn’t, she might hug her purse closer to her body, just in case there is a point to this loud altercation.

Demonstrative fake quarrel aside, today self got to:

  • see a couple of Shakespeare folios
  • see the Harry Potter dining room
  • see an annotated map of Tolkien’s Middle Earth
  • check out Blackwell’s Crime & Thriller section, where she jotted down the titles of a couple of mysteries she wants to add to her reading list.
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An Amazing, Almost-Summer Day in Oxford, UK

Really, if a lukewarm chocolate milkshake is the worst part of self’s day, she’s had a pretty good day.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Rain

Walked to the lake.

It was spitting rain.

Swarms of little insects were whirling around. Or maybe those were not insects. Maybe those were dandelion seeds. Or something else.

Tried to take shots of the lake, but the slashes across the viewfinder were really noticeable. Self settled for taking this:

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Saturday: On a walk to the lake

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Poem For After Rain

Listen yet, the Blue-Tailed Bee-Eater will come —
Green head, yellow throat, reddish breast, long blue tail —
Soon after the rain, after the last patter.
If we but listen.

—  from “Blue-Tailed Bee Eater,” in If I Write You This Poem, Will You Make It Fly by Simeon Dumdum, Jr.

Today: Keep Writing

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Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Annaghmakerrig: It is a beautiful April day!

SEASONS 3: Mendocino, Last Thursday of February 2016

It was an absolutely gorgeous day. Self went for a walk around the village.

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Mendocino Village has many examples of whimsical garden art!

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Spring is in the air! This table and chairs was in front of a local beauty salon.

And, for election season, Bernie Sanders would like to extend a warm welcome!

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Every local person self has spoken to so far is a Bernie Sanders supporter. Clearly, Mendocino is HIS town.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

More Seasons: 2016 Daily Post Photo Challenge # 8

It warmed up this week.

Self is still in Mendocino.

She likes walking to the bookstore on Main Street, Gallery Bookshop, and then taking pictures of the headlands. Because she was trying to find subjects for this week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge, SEASONS, she focused on the flowers in the meadow in front of her:

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Flowers are popping up in the meadow across from the Gallery Bookshop on Main Street, Mendocino.

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More Flowers, Same Meadow

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These flowers are tiny. Self had to do an extreme close-up. Good thing her fingers didn’t shake as much as they usually do.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

TREES: Sylvain Landry Week 34 Photo Challenge

Here’s my prompt for SL-34, TREES:

One sunny day in December, self went for a walk in New York’s Central Park. It was surprisingly warm — what they call shirt-sleeve weather.

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New York, Central Park, December 2015

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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