Quick Book Review: Stephen King’s Revival

“We came from a mystery and it’s to a mystery we go Maybe there’s something there, but I’m betting it’s not God as any church understands Him. Look at the babble of conflicting beliefs and you’ll know that. They cancel each other out and leave nothing. If you want truth, a power greater than yourselves, look to the lightning – a billion volts in each strike, and a hundred thousand amperes of current, and temperatures of fifty thousand degrees Fahrenheit. There’s a higher power in that, I grant you. But here in this building? No. Believe what you want, but I tell you this: behind Saint Paul’s darkened glass, there is nothing but a lie.”

The above quote says a lot about this novel. As a Constant Reader of Mr. King, I went into this one blind (only because I put off reading it for years and forgot the plot by the time I finally started it). I thought the little boy, Jamie, would be one of King’s “gifted kids” and Jacobs, the minister Jamie befriends, would be some kind of monster. Well, I wasn’t 100% wrong.

We see Jamie grow up to be a drug addicted musician who reunites with Jacobs at a very vulnerable moment that cements a forever connection between them. And boy does it get creepy after that. No spoilers from me, but believe me, this book’s climax is DARK AND EXTRA EVIL. Totally worth the slow build up. Kudos to Uncle Steve for yet another story with emotion and heart that will also scare the hell out of you.

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Reunited With Mouthy Broadcast!

I wanted to do a quick post to plug this super fun episode of the podcast I used to be on regularly with some of the greatest and most badass ladies (and one dude) I know. It was great to get back together with the Broads, catch up on what we’ve been up to, wax nostalgic on the past episodes we recorded, and do some straight up laughing. Check it out, won’t you? It’s the 200th episode, so if you’re a new listener, you have 199 other eps to delve into as well! Warning: Not safe for work or easily offended brains. Filled with Hidden Valley Raunch. 

 

BROADS…… ASSEMBLE!!!!!

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Thanks to Jennie, Lauren, Peter, Char, and Jen for a fantastic afternoon. I’d love to do it again.

Breaking Down That Top Ten Albums Meme Part 1

A few weeks ago, my friend Jennie tagged me in a Facebook meme. It went like this:

“I was nominated by So & So:
Day whatever of 10. In no particular order- your 10 all time favorite albums which really made an impact and are still in your rotation, even if only now and then. Post the cover, no need to explain, and nominate a person each day to do the same. Today I nominate So & So.”

I did it enthusiastically, because come on, Facebook is a piece of shit nowadays. It’s good for nothing but sharing things like this with your like minded friends. Between the politics, the data stealing, and the pyramid schemes your friends try to rope you into (hey, I actually love my LulaRoe leggings. Whatever.), it’s a garbage fire. I’m only still there because part of me still cares about some of the people I don’t see in person anymore, and the Events thingie is helpful.

ANYWAY, I wanted to elaborate on the 10 albums I chose, so here we are. I’m gonna do that! Today’s pick is the last one I chose, Viva La Vida by Coldplay.

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Coldplay always struck me as U2, Jr. And I mean that as a very high compliment. Four earnest boys who met in school, with an especially charismatic frontman bound for an evolution of even more great frontman-ness and songwriting prowess. Their live shows gave me the same vibe, and I was very interested to see/hear how their career would progress.

When Viva La Vida or Death And All His Friends was released, I felt an electric charge. Listening to it gave me such happiness because it was taking their pretty Britpop brand and giving it a proper Pokemon evolution, thanks to their experience and Brian Eno’s production prowess.  Brian Eno? The guy who worked on The Unforgettable Fire and The Joshua Tree? Hmmm. Is there a glitch in The Matrix or what? I felt this same feeling about an album in 1987, when U2 became my favorite band. Hearing this kind of stuff in 2008 was exhilarating. Remember 2008? The year of “Yes We Can?” The year we felt like everything was amazing and only bound to get better? Whew, this kind of music was a great accompaniment.

In May of 2009, I got to see the band perform in Virginia Beach. It was the second time I’d seen them (at the same venue), but this show was magical. I was with my dude, my mom, and some of my most precious friends. We all got cheap lawn seats, thinking we’d end up spending time with each other, and the music would be lovely background matter.  How wrong we were, once we saw the lady in the Live Nation gear walking towards us. Upgrade to pretty close seats? OK THANK YOU VERY MUCH. Enjoy some before and after photos, won’t you?

Look how close we ended up!

Some days are pure mystical destiny, and that experience sure was. A perfect culmination in my head, of the beauty of Coldplay’s record, the nostalgia and happiness it brought me, the year of hope, and the sharing of it with the people I love. Thanks Coldplay.

 

Happy New Year + The Indian Rex

Welcome to 2017, folks. This year is going to be insane. Who knows what will happen. How many celebrities will die? Will our new asshat President start a thermonuclear war with a fucking Tweet? One can only wait and see. I’ll do my best to write more and keep this place free of cobwebs.

 

In the meantime, I’ll share what I did yesterday during the blizzard my area experienced. I got a T.Rex costume for my birthday last year (like most 42 year old ladies, right?) and have only used it twice. Once was for the sketch comedy writing class I took, and, well, here’s the second time, for your viewing pleasure.

 

 

 

 

 

The Laugh Makes The Voice

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Voice Work.”

I read a lot of books. Not as many as I would like, but sadly I am not wealthy enough to stay home and allocate the majority of my waking hours tearing through tons of them. The idea of listening to audio books is an appealing one. I enjoy many different podcasts on my work commute, so why not get some “reading” in too? It’s always been a fascinating tidbit for me to find out who reads these versions of books I’ve already devoured, so why not get into the spirit and actually listen? Well, I’ll do it eventually. Who wouldn’t want to hear the intelligent, gentle tones of Stephen Fry read the Harry Potter series? Or Johnny Depp narrarate Keith Richards’ autobiography, Life? Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Wait a minute! I’ve had a thought!

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Don’t worry, Rust, I’m not going to get all “time is a flat circle” on you. That’s your job. Anyway, what if I wrote a book? Who would read the audio version? I wouldn’t read it myself, because I can’t stand my dorky sounding inflection. Ick. I would choose two narrators!  A boy and a girl! How they’d tag team it, I don’t know. I’d let them decide. Or my publisher. Whoever is in charge of that sort of thing.

The male reader would be Ricky Gervais. I worship the English accent, and Ricky’s is adorable, earnest, and lovely all at once. He can express all of the feels. Like, crying;

But my favorite, is laughing. Ricky has the best laugh on EARTH.

That’s who I want telling my stories of getting my period for the first time, while wearing a white skirt. AMIRITE? Maybe the lady-woman should read that bit. Scratch that. So who is that lady-girl? Why, Amy Poehler, of course. Because she ALSO has the best laugh on EARTH.

Ms. Poehler also has that earnest quality about her voice, with a faint hint of New England thrown in. I come from Massachusets folk, so it’s comforting to me.

I Can Has Autumn?

As I type this, the month of May is almost over. Summer is upon us. Sunshine, beaches, barbecues, shorts, tank tops, flip flops, all that stuff. Stuff I hate.

The heat, my god, the heat! Who wants to roast like a pig on a spit? How is heat and humidity a nice feeling? I do not enjoy sweating at all. It’s a shame, since in my older years I’ve become what some people call a “Sweaty Betty”. Any little rise in temperature starts the swirl of dampness around my pits and forehead. Then paranoia sets in. Do I have B.O.? Do I look like I just ran a marathon? And don’t get me started on what the hot air does to my hair. Curls turn into a frizzed out clown wig in seconds. Give me the cool, crisp, fall surroundings. I feel fresh and so clean, clean. Hair’s on point and my armpits are dry and smell like lavender (thanks, Secret!).

Beaches? I don’t need no stinking beaches! Sure, I live in a city that has the word Beach in it, but that doesn’t mean I’m at the oceanfront in a swimsuit (horrors). That sand gets everywhere, even if you take a barefoot stroll fully clothed. Somehow, it will end up in your butt crack, I’m telling you. I love the ocean and all the critters in it, but I’ll view it from the deck of my lovely Cape Cod mansion (imaginary, naturally). At dusk, in mid-October. No grains of sand in my butt in that scenario.

When you don’t eat meat, barbecues are a drag. Unless I’m hanging out with my tons of vegetarian/vegan friends and we’re grilling tofu burgers and veggie shish kebobs, but I don’t have tons of those friends. And I don’t have a grill. So I’ll enjoy some tater tots and a burrito in my heavily air conditioned (imaginary) Cape Cod mansion. Followed by some dairy free ice cream.

Summer attire is the worst. The WORST! I’m 41 years old, not in the greatest shape, and am as pale as a White Walker in Game of Thrones. My legs are always dry. I could soak them in a giant vat of cocoa butter for three hours, and they’d still look like rhinoceros skin. Who wants to gaze at those things? Wearing shorts hurts my soul. And tank tops? I can deal with them slightly better, since it’s an excuse to show off my sweet tattoos, but the ink is attached to pasty, freckly arms. In constant fear of getting burned by the evil yellow orb in the sky. Give me sweaters! All of the hoodies! Jeans! Boots! Converse! Layers upon layers of clothing to keep my fragile white skin safe from society!

I Feel Bad For The Woodpecker

Remember that amazing photo that turned into a “hilarious” meme? The weasel riding the woodpecker? Here, look:

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It came from amateur photographer, on a lovely walk with his wife, who wanted to show her a Green Woodpecker. He got his wish, he snapped this picture when he heard its distressed call, and that turned into stuff like this:

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Comical, right? Well, not really. Sure, it’s an incredible wildlife shot, the kind of stuff you’d never normally see, unless Sir David Attenborough was narrating in the background on your television. I understand that something so magnificent does things to the Internet. It inspires creativity and whatnot. But it’s not cute or laughable to me. When I look at it, honestly, it reminds me of this:

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I’m not comparing weasels and woodpeckers to a monk self-immolating in protest, I’m saying my emotions were jarred looking at both photos for the first time. I saw faith and sadness and selflessness looking at the above picture. When I looked at that woodpecker’s horrified eyes, I felt its terror. There was a predator on its back, trying to snap its neck and it was fleeing in a desperate attempt to save itself.

Animal photos and videos are a major staple of the internet. They can be adorable, funny, mean, goofy, and everything in between. However, things can be misinterpreted. I don’t think it’s funny or viral when there’s an animal in distress featured in a video or photograph. Here’s another example:

A Cute Cat With A Funny Meow? No, that cat is clearly upset about something and I don’t think it’s amusing.

Not everyone can realize when a critter is scared or reacting negatively to something. It’s not a perfect world, but I wish humans would educate themselves about our fellow citizens of Earth. They are going through some tough things too.