Monday, March 14, 2016

Poor Countries, Pathological Happiness, Confusing Movies, and Romantic Stories

1. Dreamed that, Tim wants to go to Afghanistan for his birthday trip. He's very enthusiastic about it. He gives a list of reasons he wants to go. Included in the list is wild camels.

As we walk, I say something like, can he guess what other place has wild camels. I also mention birds, thinking about emus.

Tim doesn't guess. I don't say anything—letting the obvious place and answer go unspoken. I'm a little worried he's going to think I'm being selfish and controlling, pushing him to go to my place for his birthday. That's not what I want. It's more about not wanting to go to Afghanistan, and also maybe wanting to show off my Australia-camel knowledge.

Tim doesn't budge. He wants to go to Afghanistan and nearby countries. In this world, that happens to include Spain. I ask if Afghanistan is a safe place to go. Tim says yes, but it's very poor.

2. Read an old blog post, as I usually do every morning.  This one is from November 2011.  It include an October 2007 dream I copied from Livejournal.  It says:

I look into us going into Peace Corps. They have programs in Australia. I am wondering if this is okay.  Australia isn't a poor country. Would it make more sense to go to third world country?   But I know they do have some poverty there.  I look at programs, and it seems peace corps has changed.  There are no long term programs. Just short ones.  The longest about 2 weeks.

The poverty thing kind of fits in with the Afghanistan dream.

3. Looked at a list of countries with the lowest Gross Domestic Product. I don't really understand what Gross Domestic Product means, but soon we'll be doing Economics for homeschooling.  After that, I'll hopefully be much smarter about the whole thing.

Anyway....

Afghanistan is #24 on the list, so it's not way up there.

The poorest country is the Central African Republic.

Australia and the United States are close together on the list—both in the 170's.  As a whole, neither of our countries are poor; but we both have people that are experiencing poverty.

4. Started watching an episode of Home and Away.

5. Wondered if Ailsa (Judy Nunn) is going to be returning as a ghost.

They've shown her picture twice. Usually, when a past character on a soap opera gets mentioned, it means they're returning.

BUT when looking for the name of the actress that played Ailsa, I saw from Lord Wiki that Nunn didn't return in 2015.

6. Saw that Billie (Tessa de Josselin) is a manipulative brat.  I suspected that.

Ash (George Mason) catches her and Kyle (Nic Westaway) in bed together.  Ash puts all the blame on Kyle. Then Billie tells Ash, it wasn't Kyle's fault. It was all her fault.

SO, at that point, I started to think maybe she wasn't so bad. Maybe she'd confess to throwing herself at Kyle, despite him not being very interested.

Nope.

What Billie does is play victim. It's her fault, because guys act like they like her and then lose interest. She's hopeless with men.  Poor, Billy.

Yeah, right.

Kyle never showed much interest in her. She offered him sex, and he reluctantly accepted. Then he regretted it, and tried to end the whole thing.  Billie made it very hard.

The girl is trouble.

7. Figured I should give her a chance. Maybe she's not so bad. Or maybe she is bad, but she'll have a personality improvement as soap opera characters often do.

8. Saw Billie acting a little bit better. She at least admits to Kyle that she was the one who started it.

Still. I don't trust her. I think it all might be part of her manipulation games.

9. Annoyed by something I've been seeing on an Australian cancer blog I read.

The blogger has since died, sadly.

I see from her blog that she went through a lot of shit. There were ups and downs. Things look hopeful. Things look bad. She feels okay. She feels like crap.

The blogger tried very hard to stay upbeat, even in the posts where she delivers bad news about her condition.

What annoys me is the commenters. They never or rarely acknowledge the bad stuff she's going through. They cling to the few positives she writes about in her post, and they respond to that.

It's that whole positive thinking attitude, and it really gets on my nerve.

A part of me thinks that maybe it's okay. Maybe the blogger was into positive thinking as well, and maybe she appreciated the overly positive comments. Maybe she's the type of person who wants happy faces and unicorns from other people, even when she's feeling down.

Another part of me thinks she wasn't okay with it. Maybe it annoyed her that people couldn't acknowledge the very difficult things she was experiencing. Also, maybe the reason she acted so positive in her blog posts is she was pressured by friends. Maybe by their behavior and responses, they gave her the message that if she wanted her friends to stick by her, she better put on a happy face as much as possible.

10. Thought if being overly sad for too long can count as a mental illness, we should also be able to diagnose overly happy and positive people as mentally ill as well.

NOT manic people—I'm just talking about people who are happy, positive, and idealistic to the point of being delusional.   It would be people who are like Joy in Inside Out.

11. Started to watch the rest of Sleeping Beauty.

12. Felt a little envious of Lucy (Emily Browning) because her sex work allows her to buy a nice apartment.

Then in the next scene, she's calling the business and asking if they have any work for her. She sounds slightly desperate.

I think that happens to people. They become financially fortunate, and that leads them to feel too secure. They become reckless.

13. Wondered if it would happen to me.

14. Hoped I'd be smart enough to not let it happen to me.

15. Saw that Lucy is doing the gross medical-gagging thing again.

Yesterday I couldn't figure out if this was part of the sex job. But that seemed unlikely because the gagging scene came BEFORE she was hired.  My other idea was it was another way for her to make money—that she was participating in science experiments.

Today I'm learning towards the experiment idea.

Though Lucy went out and bought a nice apartment, she's responsible enough to keep her day jobs. And I think she's looking for other income sources.

16. Thought the gagging scenes were absolutely horrible.

I keep waiting for Lucy to throw up.

17. Saw a scene where Lucy is abused while she's in a deep medicated sleep.

I wonder if there's a part of her that will remember it.

I guess it's like people in surgery. I think they hear things sometimes, right? Or a part of them remembers?

18. Learned from Google that there's a phenomena called anesthesia awareness.

19. Read, on this website, that anesthesia awareness is rare.

The anesthesia awareness, though, is more about people who actually are somewhat awake during the  procedure. They're aware of what's going on.

I'm thinking more about people not experiencing and remembering on a conscious level, but having subconscious memories.

20. Thought that this movie puts old men in a very bad light.

So far, the three men who have utilized the sleeping beauty service have been old men—I'd say probably seventy and older.

First of all, it seems kind of sad for a man to want to be in a room with a very young woman who's dead-asleep.

Then one of the men was downright abusive—verbally and physically.

The first men was gentle. I give him credit for that.

I'm not sure about the third man. He picked up Lucy and is holding her.  I'm not sure if he's testing his strength, or what.

21. Recognized an actor in the movie.

I looked on IMDb, and saw that it's Daniel Webber.

He played a stalker on Home and Away, and he plays Lee Harvey Oswald in 11.22.63.  

22. Felt that this movie is a mystery to me.

All these little things happen. I figure they're supposed to be symbolic and/or significant. But I don't know what they're all about.

23. Saw that Daniel Webber recently completed a movie called Teenage Kicks.  His co-star is Miles Szanto, the guy who played Kuru in The Elephant Princess.

24. Finished watching Sleeping Beauty.

I think it was a pretty bad movie.

But I'm going to read some reviews. Maybe a positive one will help me get another perspective.

Maybe my little mind failed to pick up some brilliant things.

25. Consulted Lord Wiki. He might have some insights.

26. Saw that the film is based on a book called The House of the Sleeping Beauties.

Lord Wiki says, though, that the book has a different viewpoint. While the film tells the story through the eyes of the sleeping beauty, the book tells the story through the eyes of one of the male customers.

27. Saw from Lord Wiki that I'm right about Lucy doing work for a medical lab.

 28. Decided to read a bad review first.  I want to hear from someone who agrees with me.

This review is from Entertainment Weekly. It's quite short.

Lisa Schwarzbaum calls the film an arty exploitation pic passed off as a feminist parable.

Yeah. I agree with that. The movie was artsy with a lot of nudity.  I can imagine someone going to the movie because they like to see naked people. But because it's artsy, they can feel like an intellectual.

29. Liked what Schwarzbaum says here, Her clients may have her body; at least they can’t have her waking thoughts. But Leigh doesn’t have much use for Lucy’s mind either: We never know what Lucy thinks about her odd job, or what she’d rather be doing. 

This is the same problem I saw with Leigh's other film, The Hunter. The protagonist was too mysterious.  I felt disconnected to the hunter, and I felt disconnected to Lucy.

Lucy reminds me of the person that you want to get to know, ONLY because she's so mysterious. But then after awhile, you get bored and figure she's probably not worth the time, anyway.

30. Went to a positive review. It's from Newsday.

31. Saw that this Newsday is a Long Island publication.

32. Started reading.

Rafer Guzman says, A fascinating, erotically charged mystery, "Sleeping Beauty" vibrates with sexual symbolism in every frame but contains very little sex -- at least, not the usual kind.

I'd probably like the movie more if I understood the sexual symbolism.

33. Went to Random.org to pick my next thing to watch.

It's another sex thing—My Mistress.

I hope I like it more than I liked Sleeping Beauty.

34. Saw that the star of My Mistress is French.

I'm kind of into the whole French thing lately...because of The Returned.

I've been working on learning some French with Duelingo.  It's become one of my favorite hobbies.

35. Saw that Rachael Blake from Sleeping Beauty is in this movie as well.

Should I take that as an ominous sign?

36. Looked at the male lead in My Mistress, and saw  it's a guy named Harrison Gilbertson.  

Gilbertson is appearing in a an upcoming movie called Fallen.  It's based on a novel.

I read the description of the plot, and it appeals to me. I find it very romantic. It's about a girl who goes to reform school. She meets a fellow student, and it turns out he's an angel that's been in love with her for thousands of years.

I thought I was done with young adult supernatural romance novels, but apparently there's a part of me that's still into it.

Or maybe I'm done being done with them.

37. Thought that maybe I'll download a sample of the book—see if I like it.

38. Thought that my problem with young adult novels is most of them are series. My memory isn't good enough to deal with a series. I end up liking the first novel, but by the time I get to the second, I've forgotten most of it and I'm lost.

I'm thinking what I can do is just plan on reading the first novel.  If I totally love it in an obsessive way, I'll hurry up and get the other novels.  If I like it or love it in a mild way, I'll say adios after the first book.

39. Saw that Scott Hicks, the director of Fallen also directed The Boys are Back.   I watched that a few months ago.

40. Figured that maybe I AM in the mood for romance lately.

I'm really enjoying the Lost in Kakadu book.  Although I'm not sure if it really is romance.  The male lead is gay, and the female lead is not gay.  I'm not sure how that's going to work out.

Maybe it's a friendship-romance novel?  It could be similar to a romance novel, but instead of telling the story of how people became lovers, it tells the story of how two people became friends.

41. Felt conflicted about what I said regarding mysterious people.

The thing is, outside my blog I might kind of be like a Julia Leigh movie character.  I tend to keep things to myself.

Most people, though, seem fine with this.

A lot of people prefer the conversation to be about themselves.

Some people say they want more information about me, but when I reveal things about myself to them, they don't seem that interested.

  Then there are certain people that are so busy telling me that I'm such a mystery that they don't seem to notice when I do tell them things about myself.

42. Decided that outside my blog, most people aren't that interested in me.  Then I can divide all those people into two groups. A) The rude ones who don't even try to look interested. B) The ones who try to show interest, but when it comes down to it, they seem to prefer the conversation be about themselves.

43. Realized that sometimes the people in groups A and B overlap a bit.

44. Wanted to say there's also a group C. These are the people who sometimes seem genuinely interested in me.  They too, though, overlap with those in group A and B.  Or some of them were in groups A or B, but after I bitched at them enough, they graduated to group C.

But back to Lucy.....

I shouldn't judge her or real people that are like her.  Maybe they have a reason for being quiet. Maybe they've learned that quietness is the key to being liked and accepted.

Or maybe they've learned that telling people things doesn't really get you anywhere. You're dismissed, invalidated, laughed at, ignored, interrupted, disbelieved....

45. Decided that, although I now realize I have sympathy for people who act quiet and mysterious, I don't think it works well for a movie protagonist.  

Or maybe it does, sometimes.

I'm not sure.

Maybe it just doesn't work well in Sleeping Beauty.

At least it doesn't work for me.











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