Thursday, May 5, 2011

Immigrants, Expecting Better, the Hemworth Family, and Southern Star Productions

1. Learned that the last combat veteran of World War I died in Perth. Stanley Choules was 110.   He lived a very long life.  That's good.   I wish that would happen to all the people who are fighting wars right now.  It would be nice to imagine they'll come home alive and then live very long lives.

2. Visited the Welcome to Australia site to see how they're doing.  They still don't have a lot of parties.  For example, for New South Wales, there's only one planned party...in Newcastle.   There's nothing in Sydney yet.  I would think within that big city, there'd be someone willing to have a party.  Hopefully within the next few weeks people will start planning. 

South Australia has seven parties already.  They're ahead of the game.  

3. Read stories of immigrants on the Welcome to Australia page. Arefa Hassani talks about her experiences of escaping from Afghanistan.  Her father came over first, and that was an ordeal.   Finally, he was able to sponsor the family to come over; but because her brothers were now eighteen and not legally dependent on their father, he couldn't sponsor them.  They had to be left behind.  The family was split apart.  That's so sad. 

Hassani talks about struggling to fit into a school where the language and culture was foreign to her.   It was very difficult and she ended up living in her own world—just kind of keeping to herself.  She says, Many probably assumed that I liked being alone and thus stayed away and the few that did try to get to know me failed because it must have been like talking to cardboard cut-out seeing as how I could not understand or respond. Ah jolly years.  The awesome thing is she started the Aussie school in June 2006.  It's barely five years later, and her English is amazing. I'm very impressed. 

4. Inspired to see Shelly Argent's spin-off of the It Gets Better campaign.  Hers is called I Expect Better.  She has a video.  I'll watch it soon.

I understand the purpose of the It Gets Better campaign, and I hope it encourages teens to stick around this world for awhile.   But on some level it annoys me.   It's just a bit too...I don't know.   Would fatalist be the right term?  Maybe not.   It's pretty much telling kids that the teen years suck, but don't worry they'll be over someday.    

Why not work to make those teen years a little less awful?   

And I know that's being done too.   I guess part of it comes from my homeschooling attitude. If high school is such pure torture, why do we have it?  Let's see.  We have it so kids can experience bullying; learn math concepts they'll never use and forget in ten years; and go to awkward dances.   Would the world implode on itself if we skipped all that? 

Then again, I'm not sure if things are great for all gay homeschooling teens.  They might be part of a religious community and curriculum that's just as horrible about homosexuality. 

5. Decided that maybe the campaign should be called It Gets Better But In the Meantime We'll Try To Make Things Less Awful For You. 

6. Started to watch Shelly Argent's video.  She's asking family members of gay and lesbian people (and other people who support the cause) to make videos.   I think they're going to be aimed at political leaders.   I love Shelly Argent's message to Julia Gillard.    I'm too lazy to transcribe, so please go watch it.  It's awesome. 

I love her last line. It's short so I'll transcribe that.  Remember. This is your world.  Shape it, or someone else will.   I wouldn't mind putting that on a t-shirt.  Then again, a very self-centered person may misinterpret that and take it way too literally. 

7. Loved Damoomeara's I Expect Better Video.  He kind of reminds me of Brad Pitt, but that's not why I liked the video.   Well, at least it's not the only reason I liked the video.   I like his message to Julia Gillard.   It's pretty much we expected better.   People had high expectations for Julia Gillard, the first female Prime Minister who's an atheist and living in a De Facto relationship.  Then she let a lot of us down. 

8. Offered some company advertising space on my blog.  They emailed me about putting a link up on one of my pages, and said they were willing to pay.   It seemed like one of those things where they blindly email people without even checking out the content of the website.   I'm not sure what they want exactly.   I thought of ignoring it, but then decided to ask if they wanted to advertise on the sidebar.  I'm open to paid-advertising, as long as it's not promoting something I'm morally against.

An advertisement is okay to me because people can look at it and know it's just a commercial.   Artificial link exchanges bother me because how do people know I put the link up there simply because the link's website put my link on their website? 

I have a feeling the people won't write back because they probably don't want an obvious advertisement.  They probably want something on my blog that won't look like a commercial, so it's easier to fool people into checking them out.  I'm just guessing here. I could be wrong.  

It would be nice to be wrong in this case.  

9. Read article about an Australian actress who is trying to do the Hollywood thing, and has noticed the thinness of American actresses.  Jessica Marais says she doesn't feel pressure to lose weight.   That's good.  Hopefully, those feelings will last and she won't succumb to the trends.  She says she's willing to play ugly roles.  Does that mean she equates less skinny with ugly?   She probably doesn't, but she knows that's how it works in Los Angeles.

Our obsession with weight here is almost pathological.  Here's an example.  I like playing this game where we decide which Modern Family characters make up members of my family.   I don't think anyone in my family matches one character, but you can combine two or three characters and create someone who is a bit like us.  For example, I think I'm about 60% Cam, 30% Alex, and 10% Claire.    Anyway, I was telling a family member that they remind me of Manny.   They acted somewhat annoyed by this...maybe offended?   It surprised me because I think of Manny as a very positive character.  He's mature.  He's romantic.  He's poetic.  In those ways, he reminds me of my family member.   I explained these things, and then my family member said something like Oh, okay but not the weight thing.  Instead of seeing the positive things about Manny, it seems they saw him as the fat kid.   

9. Listened to tribal music on the Australian Screen website.  It's pretty cool.

10.  Learned through the Australians in Film Facebook Page that the Thor movie is Australian; or it has an Australian actor in it.   I feel like I've been hearing about that film a lot lately.  I usually ignore it.   But now knowing it might have Australian connections, I feel compelled to give it a bit of attention.    

Okay, so the Aussie actor is Chris Hemworth.   He was featured on the Facebook page, so I figured he was Australian.  I went to IMDb and saw that he's playing the title character. That's a pretty big deal.  

The movie itself is not Australian.  It's American.  And it was filmed in America. 

Thor doesn't have any Harry Potter actors, as far as I can see, but Gilderoy Lockheart is the director.    Yeah, I like to check for these things.  

11. Looked at Chris Hemworth's IMDb profile.  His name sounds vaguely familiar, actually.  He might have been the guy at the Oscars that I googled.  

He was on Home and Away for three years.  I watched a short clip of him on that.  

He was also in the Star Trek movie.  

Oh!  He has two brothers.  One is Luke Hemworth.  He was on Neighbours. The other is Liam Hemworth.  He was on Neighbours as well.   

It's interesting that all three brothers are actors.  I wonder if they have any siblings that are not actors. 

12. Saw that Liam Hemworth is going to be in The Hunger Games.    I think that's another big young adult fiction craze.  I haven't read it yet.  I sort of want to, because I like reading popular young adult fiction.   However, the storyline didn't seem like something I'd like.   I'm probably wrong though.   I probably would like it.  Then again, it's a war thing and I didn't absolutely love John Marsden's war series which is extremely popular.   It's not that I disliked it.  I thought it was okay.   It could be because I didn't start at the first book.  I think that can make a difference sometimes.  

13. Remembered that my sister emailed me about Liam Hemworth a week or so ago.  Now THAT is probably why the Hemworth name sounded familiar to me.  She saw him in The Last Song.  

14. Saw the trailer for Thor.  I'm not impressed.  None of the little jokes made me laugh.   It seems like a cliché fish-out-of-water story.   Maybe the movie is better.   Is it out yet?  

Well, Lord Wiki says it was released in Australia on April 26.   It's starting here tomorrow.  

15. Looked up Thor on Rotten Tomatoes.  It actually got a high score.  I have some amount of trust in that site, so maybe the trailer doesn't do the movie justice.  

16. Saw a baby supply store when we went out shopping. It made me miss Offspring

17. Whined to Tim about not being able to watch Offspring

18. Thought of writing an email to iTunes begging them to make Aussie shows available.  It probably won't help, but I might feel better if I at least try. 

19. Wrote letter to iTunes.  I'm doubting it will make much of a difference. 

20. Wrote a cheesy letter to the Endemol World Distribution Company. They were really looking for buyers to contact them, so I had to say sorry, I'm not one of those.   

Anyway, Offspring is one of their...things.

Endemol...sounds like an infant formula company.   

Oh!  They're actually international.  They have offices in London, Australia, America, and other countries.   I wonder where their main office is. 

They're probably going to think I'm nuts.  And they'd be right. 

21. Looked at the website of Southern Star Entertainment.   If I'm understanding things correctly, they're now owned by Endemol.  And I think they're Offspring's production company.  

22. Wrote email to South Star Entertainment about Offspring.   

23. Wondered if you have to pay to put your television shows up on iTunes.   You probably do because otherwise everyone would be uploading their videos to iTunes.   It would become another YouTube.  So I guess the Ten Network would have to feel it was worth it to put their shows up on the American iTunes.  Or maybe you don't pay, and it's by invitation only.

I have no idea how it works. 

24. Learned from The Adelaide Magazine's Facebook Page that today/tomorrow (depending on where you're at) is the International No Diet Day.    It's a day where we can remember we don't all need to be super skinny.  You know what.   I bought a new swimming suit today.   I tried it on, and I liked how I looked in it.  But I didn't look thin.    I looked curvy, and my curves weren't all in the traditionally optimum places.   Still though....I liked how I looked. 

That being said.   I'm on a new diet.   I'm trying something new.   It's very healthy and reasonable though.   I can eat whatever I want and as much as I want—minus meat and unethical eggs, of course.   The rule is when snacking I can eat only one item at a time.    One of my big eating sins is I take big handfuls of things and stuff my face.  There's no point in that.  It's mindless eating.   I barely even taste anything.  So now instead of getting a handful of chocolate chips, I take one little chip and eat it.   If I want another chip, I go to the bag, open it, and take another.    I think not only will it keep my weight in check, but it allows me to appreciate food more.  Oh!  And it might save us money because we won't have to keep buying more snacks.  We have a bag of spiced jelly beans. Usually something like that in our house would be gone within 1-3 days.  We've had this one for ten days already, and there's still a ton left.  

With meals, I just eat regularly; although I'm trying to eat more slowly.  I try to do the thing of putting your food down between bites, but I often fail at that.  I think I need to make a rule about not getting up for seconds.   I have a problem with that.  It's almost psychological.   It's like I automatically go for seconds even if I'm not that hungry or interested in the food.  Yesterday, I had a big plate of nachos.  I rushed through that and made myself another plate. I think I rush through eating because I know I can get seconds.   If I make a rule against that, maybe I'll eat slower and savour my meal more.