Welcome to Silver and Shadow

"Look at that sea, girls--all silver and shadow and vision of things not seen. We couldn't enjoy its loveliness any more if we had millions of dollars and ropes of diamonds." -L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

This is a blog I will be using for topics other than food. Politics, religion, spirituality, humor, green living, anything that I want to talk about that doesn't fall under the food/cooking category.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Doctor Who Rules!!

It really does. And I'm always learning more and more about the show. I thought I'd list out the "rules" that I know of already for Doctor Who, so I never forget them. And do feel free to let me know if I missed anything...

Rule 1: The Doctor is a bluffer. He always has an ace up his sleeve, and that vital piece of info he never shares until he absolutely must.

Rule 2: Doctor Who is not Lost. The wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey stuff is most likely not based on a government and/or evil corporation conspiracy, and there are probably not multiple timelines going on, or alternate universes. This might not be always the case, but more than likely the time travelly stuff is more straight-forward than that. Time travel is always complex, but it doesn't have to be uber complex to still be interesting.

Rule 3: The Doctor is not infallible. Though he may be loath to admit it, he does mess up sometimes. He doesn't always make the best choices he could, and he can be downright cranky at times. This is when we roll our eyes and let him snark away cuz he'll get over himself soon enough.

Rule 4: The Doctor is very brave and not afraid to sacrifice himself for the betterment of mankind. From what I've seen, he's not got a martyr-complex, and I don't know that I'd classify it as a God-complex either. It's more like it just is what it is.

Rule 5: The Doctor would never win on Project Runway. His fashion sense is rather...unique. Whether it's a celery stalk on his lapel, or a coat of many colors, too many, really, or a fez and bowtie, each Doctor brings a different look with him. And none of them, except perhaps Nine, would really be considered "normal". I suppose, though, that's what makes him interesting. But I will say this: Bowties ARE cool...

Rule 6: The Doctor has an ego, and needs it to be fed. Hence the need for an audience in the form of a companion. Sure he gets lonely, but I think a bigger part of him needs someone constantly cheering him on. Whether this is ego, or deep down he's actually lacking in confidence, remains to be seen. Or at least seen by me.

Rule 7: The Doctor knows best. Usually. And though I hate being told what to do, more often than not, if the Doctor tells you to do something, you ought to do it. It could mean the difference between life and death.

I think that's a pretty good list so far, I'm sure I'm missing some, though.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Air Show Post

I heard about this on Thursday on the radio. The 2010 Air Expo at the Lewis-McChord Air Force Base. They put this on every other year and it's free. They put it on for the local community, to give back to them. Now, normally I wouldn't be interested in an air show, but I went to one as a little kid and the only real memory of it I have is the hamburger I ate there that day. I wanted to try another one. I think it's good do try and do things once in a while that are normally not things you'd do. Things completely outside your realm of knowledge or comfort. Because you never know what you might end up liking.

So we went, and it was cold and cloudy, so I wore jeans and no sun screen. This ended up being a mistake. The jeans were good, because they kept my legs covered, but my face was horribly burnt because the sun finally did come out and we were in it for about 4 hours. It was worth it though. There was a storyline to it, not like I thought it would be. I just thought it would be random airplanes flying randomly, but there was a plot, and bombs and stuff so it was really cool. And my friend from high school flew his "Warthog" in the show and had a huge role in it. The narrator kept saying his name, it was fun.

Airplanes are very interesting, but not very pretty. Function over form, I suppose. But they showcase the amazing things we can do as humans. Creating machines that can fly up into the sky like birds, with grace and strength. The power they wield is truly awe-inspiring. And it showcases what the military is good at: being powerful and intimidating, yet not always deadly. They drop food and other aid to people out of those planes too, not just bombs. I guess it's a balancing act. It's cool to know that the airmen, as they're called, I guess there are no airwomen? love what they do and get true joy out of it. I suppose there is an art to flying those planes. Those people are expressing themselves and the way they see the world, when they fly. And I say, fly on!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Shakespeare, on second thought...

After giving it some thought, and a good night's sleep, I have made some changes to my attitude towards Shakespeare. I realize now that he is a product of his time and culture. But by taking the words of his plays and setting them in modern times, it takes them out of his time and culture, and for me, makes them less relevant, not more. I can handle his antiquated notions about women or mental illness if it's set in the proper place and time. Seeing it in today's world just drives me crazy. What's so wrong with people watching the words set in the time and culture they were meant for? Why can't people just imagine life back then instead of having things redone for their time? Maybe that's why I've put off watching Ten Things I Hate About You for so long...??

The other issue is the language. It's tough, but I realized that for myself, it's easier to think of it as literally a completely different language than English. The words might be words I know now, but they aren't what they were then, and that makes them completely separate from today's language. So, it does need translation, and studying and all that to really get it.

I realize now I was reacting to seeing Shakespeare set in modern times. I have never had a problem watching or listening to or reading the old-school stuff. I really think that's the key that's getting go me.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Shakespeare, is he really all that?

I must admit to having a love-hate relationship with the works of the great Shakespeare. I have to have a certain amount of respect for works that have lasted and been loved for so many centuries. But I feel that they aren't perfect either. I think if Shakespeare had lived in our time, he'd be a soap opera writer, or write for a show like Grey's Anatomy or Desperate Housewives. Behind all the fancy schmancy language is usually a pretty simple story. Stories that rely on pretty simple people. Or stupid people in some cases.

And then there's the language. I have to read the versions with the translations on the side of the page just to understand it. I mean, it's English, but it's not. I know what the words mean, but when they're all put together the way he did it, I feel like I'm dyslexic. Not being able to understand such a simple story only makes me feel stupid, which makes me like Shakespeare less. But, when I do get it, I really do get it. And it's usually fun at that point.

I just don't think he should have written about stuff he didn't necessarily know anything about, like mental illness. It's one thing to write about witches and magic, cuz that's not real and whatever you want it to be, it can be. But knowing how mental illness works is kind of important when you use it so often as a story-telling device. Sure it makes for an interesting story, but it's not very helpful. There's such a stigma against mental illness already that there doesn't need to be stuff like that out there giving people the wrong idea.

I know he can't be considered responsible for it, he was a product of his times, and who knows what sort of education he had. I'm sure that's well known, but I don't care enough right now to Google it.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Living Green, Shopping Green

I used to buy clothes from second-hand stores all the time in high school. It was all the rage. I was big into grunge, and wouldn't be caught dead in store-bought clothes. But somewhere after that I got away from that. I started earning money of my own, and could afford new stuff, so why not buy it? I have never been a clothes horse, nor do I have any amount that could be considered excessive. I have used up just about all the shirts I have for work and now they all have stains, so I have to go out and buy more. My first thought was, "Now I have to go to the mall." But my second thought was, why not buy used, instead of new? Reusing things is one of the most important tenets of Green living. I realized that I had become a part of the cycle of producing too much "stuff", and needed to get out of it. To do this, meant going back to thrift stores. The only problem? Trying stuff on at those places is sort of creepy. The solution? I did it anyway. And took a shower when I got home. The new Value Village up where I live is really nice, brightly lit, and the dressing rooms are not at all creepy. I had a lot of luck there. I came away with two bags stuffed full of clothes for work and around the house, plus a book, for $54 and change. It was enough that I didn't need to go to the mall after all. I feel very proud of myself, and had a lot of fun in the process. This is a change I will be able to maintain.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Patriotism and Me, It's Complicated...

Every year around this time, I contemplate my feelings for my country. I am not by nature a flag-waving person, filled with passion and zeal for the United States of America. But I don't hate it either. Pride is just something I don't tend to feel towards my country. But I do feel love. I love the land, and I love the people. I can't think of a more beautiful country in the world, nor can I think of a place where so many different sorts of people live together, trying to get through life together. I do feel pride for that. But the idea of the government mingling in all of that, tempers it. I do love that we strive to be better. We want to be a good nation, run by the Constitution. And it's a darn-sight better than some other forms of government out there.

But there are things that bother me about us too. No matter what your political beliefs are, we all believe ours is the correct set. And everyone seems to want to foist their beliefs onto everybody else. I don't know why we can't coexist peacefully, but it's been 250ish years and we have yet to do so. Here's hoping we make a bit more progress in the next 250. What we stand for, and what we do, are often conflicting. And our nation's leadership seems to exemplify this very well, no matter which party is in power. It makes it difficult for me to be a flag-waver.

One of these years I hope to have it all figured out. But as with all things, it's the journey, not the arrival, that makes it all worth while. I may never be the type to love, with a deep passion, my country, but maybe I'll grow more comfortable with the feelings that I do have. I think, my greatest feeling of pride and love, come from the fact that I live in a country where I am allowed to not love it blindly and only say positive things about it. I have the right to be critical, and to expect better of it. Therein lies its greatest strength and is what sets it apart from other nations in the world. And that, is something that I can feel very proud of.