To This May
By W. S. Merwin
They know so much more now about
the heart we are told but the world
still seems to come one at a time
one day one year one season and here
it is spring once more with its birds
nesting in the holes in the walls
its morning finding the first time
its light pretending not to move
always beginning as it goes
I have a new nephew! James Clair, named after his grandfathers (this is the son of my husband's middle brother and his wife; they have an eighteen-year-old, a nine-year-old and a three-year-old). The baby's lungs weren't quite mature, so he was in intensive care for several hours and they are keeping him overnight for observation; his birth was a c-section, so his mother will be in the hospital for another few days anyway. I learned this from my in-laws, with whom I had a lovely quiet half-hour visit discussing European travel and the new Hanover library before we went to my younger son's violin concert at school. Each of the students had composed a short piece and the teacher recorded accompaniment on his keyboard; my son's was called "Attack of the Pillows" (no, I have no idea why!) My parents and apaulled came to the concert too, so son was very pleased to have such a big family audience. The teacher let one girl who had obviously been playing the violin for most of her life play a very long solo piece, which was very pretty but took up so much time that some of the composed pieces didn't get played and all the band instruments were rushed -- not the best planning. My son likes him a lot as a music teacher, though, so I forgive him.
On the way out I ran into my son's classroom teacher, who said she urgently needed a printout of his penguin play with a couple of corrections, preferably by the end of the school day as they were having the ones that were being performed for the school photocopied for distribution Monday morning. So son and I raced home, booted the computer and got the corrections printed and rushed back to the school. Meanwhile older son called to tell me that his bus was over half an hour late due to traffic, could I please pick him up at the first bus stop instead of making him walk home from the last one? In-laws volunteered to get him while I finished my Star Trek review ("The Omega Glory") and the site columns. When apaulled got home, we went to the annual school fundraiser bash, which was in a strange state this year because of the thunderstorms predicted for this evening (which we are getting now, along with flash flood warnings). The DJ was sent to the All-Purpose room, the moon bounce was set up on the front lawn but there was no giant inflatable slide, the food was served in the cafeteria and the tables were set up inside but the cotton candy, face-painting and assorted other games were outside. They brought in pizza and California Tortilla, so we ate well, and the kids did lots of running around.
Favorite phrase when you have:
1. Eaten food that tasted bad: BLEAAGGGCCCH!
2. Stubbed your toe: FUCK!
3. Become frustrated: FUCK!
4. Broken something: FUCK!
5. Been cut off by another driver: ASSHOLE!
All subject to change if my children are in the room/car with me, though not always. *g*
thefridayfive: The '80s
1. Favourite movie of the 1980s? Crimes and Misdemeanors
2. Favourite musician/group of the 1980s? Madonna/U2
3. Favourite TV show of the 1980s? Dallas in the early years, Star Trek: The Next Generation in the later years (I was in college and grad school during the late '80s and didn't watch television for the most part)
4. Favourite invention of the 1980s? Was the artificial heart in the '80s? I guess among popular items it's the CD player (the first of which might be older than the '80s but I didn't own one!)
5. World Event from the 1980s that stands out in your mind? It's late in the '80s, but nothing compares to the fall of the Berlin Wall. Really, in some ways, that marks the end of the '80s, which started with Reagan becoming president and I thought there would probably be a nuclear war and we wouldn't survive them.
I don't know whether to be really happy about Doctor Who or really unhappy, since we're down to the final Eccleston episodes and who knows how many years we might have to wait before we get the Tennant episodes...and I am not sure I want non-Eccleston episodes, though Torchwood cannot arrive soon enough. I utterly love the pop culture destruction of the world...in some ways I feel like this is the Schwarzenegger Homage Episode, since the storyline reminded me so much of The Running Man (the game show where you die!) and Arnold had become president. Those were actually the voices of Anne Robinson and Trinny and Susannah! And I assume the woman who does Big Brother in the UK. My second favorite line in the episode might have been The Anne Droid's observation that Rose can afford peroxide despite being unemployed. My favorite, of course, was the naked Captain Jack's response to the observation that he had a compact laser hidden...where? "You really don't want to know." And the third was the Doctor explaining to Lynda, who thinks he looks good for a guy more than 100 years old, "I moisturize."
I also like the Borg Queen Controller -- of course she's not, since she's a pawn of the Daleks rather than the person who's really running the Collective, but that was my visual impression of her and she looks like a cross between Alice Krige and Tilda Swinton, which only reinforces it. I wasn't quite convinced by the Doctor's guilt complex this time -- "I made this world" -- he couldn't have known that there were interfering time-traveling aliens, and what was the alternative, leaving Satellite Five in the control of the creature that stopped the great human empire from forming the first time around? His guilt complex over thinking he got Rose killed works a lot better, particularly since he's been flirting with Lynda and then snarking at Jack for doing the same (Jack finds the Doctor: "Hey, handsome!" Then introduces himself to Lynda, is asked to do his flirting outside and told that saying hello from him is flirting.) He's back to making cracks -- "Like I was ever going to shoot" -- very quickly after appearing not to care if he got killed after Rose's disintegration, as is Jack -- "Do I look like an 'out of bounds' sort of guy?"
I loved the response to "we're just doing our jobs," and to the Controller saying that Rose's death doesn't matter, but I don't think I had the kind of reaction I was meant to when the Dalek fleet appeared...because I was spoiled for it, and on a reveal like that, it makes a difference. I've tried so hard to isolate myself from the fandom proper but I still run into enough to know too much! I mean, yes, I KNOW the Doctor is going to save Rose Tyler and save the earth and wipe every stinking Dalek out of the sky...okay, sort of, but although I have always maintained that spoilers don't spoil a truly great movie or TV episode, and it isn't the plot exactly, it's more the energy, feeling a kind of emotional detachment because it's come and gone for so many people. I had the same thing with Sharpe watching what ultimately happens to Teresa because I was sort of watching it in fannish isolation, long after most people I knew who loved it had seen it.