Friday, December 18, 2015

Seeker Daily, Stressful Empathy, Violent Fantasies, and Not Nick

1. Looked at an educational series on YouTube called Seeker Daily. We watched one of their videos yesterday about Puerto Rico. I thought it was pretty good, so, this morning, I decided to add more of their videos to our curriculum.

I found one about Australia and started watching that so I can get an idea of how accurate the videos are. Are these videos providing decent information or bullshit information?

So far, I'm liking the Australia one.

There's was one piece of information that was new to me. So I Googled to make sure there's something else out there that agrees with them.

What I just learned is that Australia tried to scare away asylum seekers in the year 2000 with a campaign about Australia's dangerous animals.  There's an article that backs up the video.

One thing the video says that I don't know is true or not is that this campaign the reason why Australia has that reputation for being full of dangerous animals.

2. Imagined the campaign might have perpetuated the rumor, but I don't think it's what started it.

3. Finished watching the Seeker Daily Australia video.

I thought it was fantastic. It talked about various truths and misconceptions in an honest but gentle way.

One of the things they talked about is the reputation of the Australian people. The world sees them as being fun, friendly, and outgoing. The video talks about how there is, however, a negative side. Australia also has a reputation for racism. The Cronulla Riots are mentioned.  BUT then the video talks about how many Australians are trying to fight against the racism.

I think the general idea of the videos is to show that countries are neither as wonderful or as bad as we might imagine.  No, Australia is not full of wonderful overly friendly people who are in constant danger of being bitten by a snake or eaten by a crocodile.  Yet it's also not a country where everyone is beating up people who are not the same race as them.

4. Started watching an episode of Scooter Secret Agent.

5. Finished watching the episode.

One of the subplots was about the teens missing their no-longer-their mothers.  It fits well with Oranges and Sunshine, which I shall return to watching soon.

6. Learned from Twitter that Phillip Morris lost their battle against Australian plain packaging.


I didn't know they were still trying to fight the packaging.

I'm so glad they lost.

It's disgusting that they even tried to fight the packaging, but what else can we expect from a tobacco company?

7. Went back to watching Oranges and Sunshine.

I feel like this movie is trying to tear my heart out.

I'm also needing to hug Hugo Weaving right now. Yeah, my brain knows it's not really him that's missing his mother. But my heart feels otherwise.

8.  Saw that Margaret (Emily Watson) has been diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder.  Margaret is in denial, because she thinks she's not the one who's been victimized. It's the people she's trying to help that have been wronged. The doctor talks about her absorbing their pain. That makes sense.

I think sometimes people get more stressed about other people's problems than their own. Maybe because if it happens to us, we feel we have more control over the situation.  When it happens to someone else, there can be more feelings of helplessness and hopelessness.

9. Thought that Margaret's PTSD is also about her own problems. In the movie, she's being victimized by bullies who don't want her to continue investigating the abusive things that were done to the British-Australian children.

One guy actually comes to her house and terrorizes her—tries to break in.  I think that in itself is enough to give most people PTSD.

10. Thought about how Margaret is doing so much for these adult victims of childhood atrocities. Yet she probably still feels helpless. She can help people learn about their past. Sometimes she can reunite families. But she can't take away the abuse that happened. She can't return all the lost years to these mothers and children.

The other thing is Margaret is spending so much time helping these families, she's neglecting her own. I do have a hard time with parents who do so much charitable work that their own family suffers.  But with something like this, I feel the sacrifice is warranted.

Margaret is helping these families because she is truly passionate about the cause.  I think this is so different than a parent who neglects their family because they like to feel needed; they want to further their political ambitions, or they desire a lengthy philanthropy resume.

All that being said, in situations like this, work needs to be done to find some kind of balance. How? I don't know. And when you're dealing with such a heartbreaking cause; even if you're physically there, are you mentally there?

11. Imagined kicking in the skulls of all the people who caused this atrocity—their brains squishing like melons.

Usually I don't have violent fantasies like this.

12. Figured for my evil violent fantasy to work, these perpetrators would need to be turned into zombies and left out to rot for a few years.

If I kicked in the skulls of living people; I'd likely just break my toes.

13. Decided I feel more anger towards the officials who brought about the transfer of the children than I do towards the people who sexually abused the children at the children's home.

I guess it's because I feel sympathy towards some pedaphiles. I think they have a sickening urge that has to be fought. Sometimes the person lose the fight even though they don't want to hurt anyone.

I'm sure, though, that there are sexual abusers of children who don't have any perverted sexual urges. For them, it's probably a matter of bullying and control.  I AM going to kick in the zombie melon heads of these people.

No, not for real— just in my imagination.  

14. Thought about how many lives would be saved if we did all our shooting, bombing, and stabbing in our imaginations.

Or video games. That would work too.

15. Saw something that seems to be an anachronism in the film.

Len (David Wenham) hands Margaret a bottle of water.  The movie takes place in the 1980's.

I don't remember water bottles being available in the 80's.

Maybe they were in Australia?

16. Consulted Lord Wiki.

He says bottled water was actually popular back in the olden days, but it's popularity declined in the United States in the beginning of the 20th century, because municipal drinking water became safer.

He says, though, that it remained popular in Europe.

Maybe Australia as well?

17. Finished watching the movie.

It's incredibly sad.

I liked that at the end, they had the apology from the British Prime Minister. It doesn't make up for what happened, but it's still nice.

18. Consulted Lord Wiki about Margaret Humphreys, the heroine of the film.

He says British children weren't just sent to Australia, but also other places in the Commonwealth, including Canada and New Zealand.

19. Saw that although the movie Oranges and Sunshine didn't receive many honors from the UK, Humphreys herself did. She received three honorary degrees from British universities.

20. Read an article about Humphreys that was published in 2010, a few days before the apology.

It talks about all the stuff I saw in the movie—what happened to the British children; the hostile reaction of the government to the accusations; Humphrey's family troubles; her medical and psychological problems, etc.

The article also talks about reparations. The migrants wants funds to pay for flights so they can afford to visit their long lost mothers, attend funerals, visit graves, etc.

I think this is definitely deserved. Did anything ever come of that?

21. Wondered about citizenship? Could these children get their British citizenship back?

22. Went to the Child Migrants Trust page.

The front page gave me some tears—maybe of relief.  They list entities that have provided funding. It includes the British government and the Australian government.

23. Saw that they have a page with information about how to apply for funds.  The people wanting funds need to be the child migrant themselves. It can't be the child of the migrant.  If you're the daughter of a now deceased man who had been sent to Australia as a child; they're not going to give you money to visit your long lost grandmother.

I think that's fair. It's not that I don't feel bad for the descendants. I'm sure it's sad for them too. But it does seem practical to limit who's going to be helped.

24. Saw the citizenship issue is dealt with on the website.

25. Surprised. I thought they were talking about Australians wanting to reclaim their British citizenship. But no. It's about these people getting full Australian citizenship. Because despite living their lonely lives in Australia as pseudo-orphans, they're only considered residents.


On the bright side, there was a cost to these applications, but the Children Migrant Trust did some campaigning and got that waived.

26. Wondered if any of these forced-migrants have worked to get their British citizenship back?

27. Had a closer read.

Children who came before 1944 were granted automatic citizenship. Those who came after had to pay and apply if they wanted to be citizens.

28. Continued to wonder about British citizenship.

Maybe no migrant wants it? Their country did send them away. The thing is, though, the receiving countries were awful to these children. I can understand the migrants not wanting British citizenship, but I can't see why they would want Australian?

29. Googled and found this article, which says the migrants are still British citizens.

Now that I think of it, it makes sense. I'm feeling stupid now. If they're not Australian citizens, this would mean they're still British citizens.

Well, at least that would be the case for the post-war migrants. For those ones who came before 1944, they might want their British citizenship back.  Maybe?

30. Googled Bindoon, the evil place, in Australia, where some of the boys were sent.

31. Started reading this article about Bindoon.

It was a Boys Town near Perth, and was run by a Catholic order.  Well, I got that from the movie. There were priests working at Bindoon.

32. Felt that I've read this stuff before.

I should search through my blog.

The article has the name of one of the abusive priests—Francis Keaney. I feel like I've written about him before.

33. Searched my blog for Francis Keaney.

There's nothing.

34. Searched for Bindoon.

There's nothing there as well.

35. Looked at the filmography of Dany Cooper, the editor of Oranges and Sunshine. She looks a bit like Toni Collette.

She has some Australian stuff on her filmography, so I'm thinking she's probably Australian.

She was the editor for The Sapphires, some episodes of Redfern Now, and some episodes of Puberty Blues.

She also edited many other things. I'm just mentioning that which is most interesting to me.

36. Went to to pick my next show.

It's the movie Snowtown Murders.

It doesn't look like a happy story.

37. Saw from Netflix that it's about a serial killer.

38. Looked at the movie on IMDb.

I don't recognize any of the actors names.

39. Saw that one of the actors, Daniel Henshall, was on The Babadook and Not Suitable For Children. So although I might not recognize his name; I might recognize his face.

40. Remembered Daniel Henshall.

Well, I started to think that maybe he's the guy who played the clown on Rake. I looked at his filmography, and it turns out I'm right. So maybe I kind of did remember his name.

41. Found a 2007 Tropfest finalist film to watch. It's called "Road Rage".

This one has information about it's director on the film's page.

Well, actually I'm confused.

The director is listed as being Mark Bellamy. Then on the little info blurb, the director is referred to as Nick.

Since when has Nick been a nickname for Mark?

But anyway. This Nick guy has worked in the media office for Obama's Presidential campaign.

42. Wondered if there's a mistake; and maybe Nick is the writer, not the director.

43. Looked at the film on IMDb.

I don't see any Nick.

The film is written and directed by Mark Bellamy.

44. Decided Tropfest has made a mistake. They list other films Nick has made; and none of them are on Mark Bellamy's filmography.

45. Found the Nick.

His name is Nick Baker.

Nick Baker makes short films, but he didn't make "Road Rage".

46. Saw that Nathaniel Buzolic, one of the actors from "Road Rage" has been on several American TV shows—The Originals, Significant Mother, Pretty Little Liars, Bones, Supernatural, and The Vampire Diaries.

On Significant Mother, he played a character named Jimmy Barnes. That threw me off a bit. I thought it might be some kind of Australian bio-pic. But no. It's American.

47. Saw that in 2008, Buzolic was on many episodes of an Australian TV show called Out of the Blue.  Guess who was one of his co-stars?

Daniel Henshall!

48. Started watching "Road Rage".

49. Thought that the movie, so far, is incredibly sweet and adorable.

What happens is this guy has road rage and goes after the car that angered him.

The driver that caused the anger ends up being very upset and apologetic. At first the angry driver is just annoyed, but then he starts acting sympathetic.  The two of them block the road. Then when other drivers come by and get angry, the original angry driver defends the upset driver.

I'm doing a bad job explaining it. Sorry.

The general idea is people transitioning from a state of anger to a state of compassion.

50. Finished watching the movie.

It was lovely—a feel good kind of thing.

51. Watched The Mindy Project.

There was a reference to Baz Luhrmann.

52. Saw that Miranda Otto is on Homeland.  Tim turned it on after we finished watching Mindy.  I thought the woman looked like Miranda Otto, but I doubted it was her.  Why? Because I've looked at Otto's filmography lately. It seemed to me that I would have noticed her being on Homeland.

53. Went to Miranda Otto's filmography to make sure there's not anything else I'm missing.

54. Found something exciting.

She's going to be in a remake of Westworld.

I feel like I've heard about this project before. But who knows. I also thought I had blogged about Bindoon; and it turns out that's not the case.

55. Saw that Westworld is going to be a series.

56. Saw that Miranda Otto is in the American remake of Rake.

Did I know that already?

I feel like I'm going to make myself insane with all this trying to figure out whether or not I've written about something before.

You know what I worry about. I worry that I'm going to learn something; get excited about it; and someone reading my blog is going to think, does she not realize she wrote about that a few weeks ago?

Today the opposite happened though. I thought I had blogged about something before; but it turns out I hadn't.  Or maybe it's that I'm becoming paranoid about being repetitive and not remembering what I've learned. So now I'm imagining I already blogged about things even if they're new to me.

57. Thought of another possibility.

It could be the whole wibbly wobbley timey wimey thing.  

Maybe all of my blog is already written; and sometimes I remember what I will end up writing in the future.

Maybe somewhere deep inside I already know every Australian film and TV show that will ever end up existing.

You might think that would be cool. But with my brain, it would just end up making me even more confused.

58. Wanted to know more about the Ben Mendelsohn Star Wars movie.

Is it a major Star Wars film like The Force Awakens?  Or is it a smaller deal?  Like a spinoff type thing? Maybe a straight to video project?

59. Wondered if there's a future me that has learned to spell Mendelsohn without having to look it up.

I keep getting it wrong.

60. Looked at IMDb.

The movie is called Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.  It is a spin-off. IMDb says it's the first live action spin-off since 1985's Ewoks: The Battle for Endor.