Smart People

S and I went to see Smart People last night at the Guild 45th, I’ve never been to the theatre and really not had the chance until last night. It was worth going to a small theatre to see a good movie.

imageOk so the movie itself was smart as the title would suggest. The cast was good, the direction was worth seeing, and the writing was excellent! Ellen Page, after her appearance in Juno, I didn’t expect something like this from her, plays a young republican who is growing up to be just like her father, played by Dennis Quaid, a self absorbed prick. It’s not until her adopted uncle, Thomas Haden Church, who is… well exactly opposite from her father, that she begins to find something better to do with her life. Don’t misunderstand me when I explain the characters, the movie is not just about a single one of them, it’s about a whole family of them. The son is a poet, the father is a professor, the daughter is a republican and the uncle is… well he’s not much of anything expect the voice of reason. It’s almost like the uncle character is a confused Jiminy Cricket, in the way that if you’re a young republican you have a conscience that’s telling you to smoke pot and get drunk.  The best line from the film was when Ellen Page was at the bar getting drunk and comes out from the bathroom to see a few of the people from her school and says “what’s it like to be dumb?” The response from the other girls is “what’s it like to eat lunch by yourself?” her response to this quip is “it sucks.”

Discussion on Compassion – Or how to be a better human

scc Seattle - DL-1The Seeds of Compassion conference in Seattle is something of an anomaly as far as I can tell. It’s been billed as several different things it seems and it became clear to me when I was speaking with the media wrangler from the organization that the purpose of this conference is to focus on the raising of our children to be compassionate humans.

The approach is a series of conferences and lectures to bring experts in the field of raising children into one venue and give you access to them. Some of their comments will not agree with you, but that’s the point. You have to make up your own mind when it comes to raising your children, but if you give them the opportunity to be a compassionate human you’re going to be contributing to the bettering of our society.

scc Seattle - DL-5A quote from an eleven-year-old child brought the idea of compassion home to me, “They say home is where the heart is, but if you don’t have a home where does your heart live?” This was the lead into the discussion of children in the foster home and orphanage systems the world over, the idea that these children are raised with little or no compassion for not only their physical but their emotional well being is a travesty, it’s a sign our society has something desperately wrong with it that we need to address.

scc Seattle - DL-7When it came time for His Holiness the Dalai Lama to speak he started out by mentioning the benefits of compassion and how it’s not just a wholesome feeling you receive when you help someone out of compassion, but it’s the residual feelings you generate not only in yourself but others around you. One of the other concepts that He spoke of was the idea that to practice and cultivate compassion can bring less fear and more inner strength to an individual. The idea that every human action should carry compassion is something that is universal in His thoughts from this afternoon’s discussion.

Compassion is a seed of potential, the more you practice compassion the more you benefit the world over. You can be the seed of change by helping one person out of compassion rather than out of obligation. How can we ignore such a simple call to action? We ignore the helpless, we ignore those less fortunate and all it takes is a small amount of time scc Seattle - DL-8to reach out and be compassionate to others.

My favorite quote from His Holiness was towards the end of the discussion, “One does not need religion to be compassionate or to learn compassion.” You can believe in any version of god you decide, or none if you like, but we all need compassion in our lives.

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Movie night

I decided I did enough partying last Friday (and last night) to go out this Friday, besides I have to wake up early tomorrow to drive to Oregon to see my sister and her family.

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

image I decided this would be a good movie to watch while eating dinner… Not something I recommend to the weak stomached but I’m good to go. Now, one could say I’m into musicals and musical theatre, this was neither. It’s a movie that just happens to have singing in it, and usually it’s done while someone is having their throat cut :-), which of course endears the musical numbers to me. I won’t say more, but I will say this, rent it, watch it and laugh your ass off and get a little teary at the end when it all makes sense. Johnny Depp in the role of Todd is fantastic, he can convince you of his madness and his absolute need for revenge upon Alan Rickman‘s Judge Turpin, while Helena Bonham Carter‘s Mrs. Lovett was good, but not the best I’ve seen. All in all it’s a bloody fucking movie and you can’t help but grin a little at this vision of the Demon Barber!

Criminal

imageNot something that was originally on my list of things to watch, when it came out I was slightly interested but was traveling a lot so I didn’t have the chance to see it in the theater, which was probably for the best. It’s a movie to watch on the couch at home with a bottle of wine (which I didn’t have, so that may color my review slightly) and a friend so you can make snarky comments about the poor direction. That said I did find some of the performances to be noteworthy and I liked the roles that Maggie Gyllenhaal, John C. Reilly and Diego Luna played. I liked them separately, as a whole they didn’t seem to fit correctly, but apart they were astounding roles and well written for each actor.

Now it’s time to get my iPod ready for tomorrows 8 hour drive…

Demon Liquor

Drunk last night…  Sending random text messages to people for the most part I sent the wrong messages to quite a few people last night.

To show for it I have a wicked hangover that I’m trying to get rid of, I feel like if I move a little to fast I’ll spew…

Now I’m sitting here watching “The Nines” which is slightly disturbing in a Misery, Alfred Hitchcock sort of way.  So far I’m impressed, I’ll let you know more later.

Interesting

So I’ve been watching movies for a long while, well lets just say I pay attention to cinema and what it has to offer.  I just recently watch Jack Black not playing Jack Black and I wasn’t disappointed.  I also saw a preview of a movie that includes Kevin Smith playing someone other then Silent Bob, again something I’m glad to see.  For far to long I’ve watched these actors play themselves and nothing else and I’m glad to see they can branch out and play something else.  Well done and I hope it’s not the last time.

Inconceivable

I watched the Princess Bride for the first time in ten years tonight. I forgot how funny and all around enjoyable the movie is. Lines like “bye bye boys, have fun storming the castle. Think it will work? It’ll take a miracle, bye bye.” Have been with me for years and I’d forgotten the joy they bring to me. I’m happier tonight watching that movie then I’ve been in weeks. I’m glad I brought out that oldie but a goodie, it lifted my spirits! Of course I’m going to credit my dinner at Blue C and drinks afterwards at the dock with S as a potential addition to my uplifted mood, so maybe it’s just a combination of good feelings from this evening that’s put me in a better place… If so, thanks S for listening, talking, eating and drinking with me tonight!

Sunday what a funday

So I asked my neighbor to go shopping this weekend, thinking it would be a fun way to spend a Sunday morning / afternoon.  After all it’s the holidays and I like going to the Market this time of year.  Well it was a great morning, I got to sleep until 11:30 or so when T knocked on my door, I had to work late Saturday night or I would have been up earlier.  We were off to the Market by 12:00 or so, we hit the Piroshky place first, after all you can’t go to the Market on an empty stomach.  After waiting in line for a few minutes while our stomachs growled at the tasty piroshkies in front of us, we got our order in and decided to get a cup of coffee at the original Starbucks.  Well that’s were the day went a little sideways, it was great up until the point of seeing my X with her guy.  It was awkward for me, and I was glad to see that I can see her in public and fight the urge to throw things at her, but it didn’t save the poor Piroshky bag from my fury.  Needless to say I don’t have any drive to see her again and in fact I would prefer not to see her ever again.

On the plus side I had a great time with my neighbor and I even got some Christmas shopping done, took some photos (which I hadn’t done in a long while) and helped create a fantastic salad.

Ahi Tuna Spinach Salad

1/2 lb. Ahi Tuna
1/2 cup pine nuts
1 bag baby spinach
1/2 head of fresh cauliflower
1/4 cup goddess dressing (trader joes)

Sear the tuna on both sides after doing a salt and pepper rub, go heavy with the pepper, toast the pine nuts over medium low heat, toss the spinach with the cauliflower and dressing, slice the tuna thin and arrange on the top, garnish the whole thing with the pine nuts and serve.  This will feed two grown adults who love a good slice of ahi tuna!  If you want a carb with this I suggest a rustic wheat bread or something similar.