baleanoptera: (The Wire Omar)
[personal profile] baleanoptera
Hmm..not much posting lately - but I'm currently trying to finish a paper and watching season 4 of The Wire.

I'm on episode six now and I must say that this season might become my new favourite, right next to season two. While I loved the whole Barksdale story of s1 and 3, there is something that touches my heart in a different way when it comes to s2 and now s4. I also love how the show has in a way expanded in this season. It is becoming clearer and clearer that this is so much more than "just a cop" show.

favourite things so far:

- the kids referring to Chris as 'the Zombiemaster'. First of it is a creepy nickname, and secondly it is heartbreaking listening to them spin tales and horror stories around these events. Its almost like they are trying to distance themselves from the all too horrid reality.

- WeeBay as a father. The whole conversation between Namond and his parents when they tell him to be a good boy and show up for work - which is working at a corner. It's bitterly ironic and so poignant at the same time.

- Bunny Colvin walking the school corridors like they are his beat. I love Bunny. I feel everything is safer with the world as long as he is there.

- Rhonda and Cedric! They are so sweet together and she makes him laugh.

- Omar. I've just seen the episode where he gets sent to jail. It is upsetting me people!

- The cunning of Prop Joe. The man is Machiavelli to the teeth!

- The visuals! The use of circles and rings throughout. I'm not sure of the symbolism yet, but I love how they build their world visually just as careful as they do with everything else. Also loved the parallels between Marlo and Royce at their respective poker tables.(tables which were round I might add.)

- The kids. I'm in awe of how this show has me worried sick about these kids. It should here be mentioned that I'm not that fond of children - especially not on film. But these kids? I just want to kidnap them and take them somewhere safe. Though I think Michael is doomed. He stands too much alone and in this show that is never good. It seems you only have a change if you reach out to other people with your problems and take comfort in friends. But that said I hope like crazy he will be fine, but it's only a fools hope.

- Carver! How did you become one of my favourite characters? When did this happen? But who cares - for you are wonderful now. You are Bunny Jr! Hee.

- Rawls. He is funny, mean and more often right than not. I'm just so glad I don't know anyone like that in real life.


And then for something entirely different:

taken from [ profile] appplegnat and [ profile] finnygan - The ten things a reader of this LJ should know about me. Possibly...

1.After several years with either bright red. Blue, blue/green, green, purple and purple/blue hair I had more or less forgotten what my original haircolour looked like. I was pleasantly pleased to find out it was light brown.

2.The first time I was in Rome I hated the city. Now it is one of my all time favourites.

3.My mother and most of my aunts are nurses. This led to spending an entire Christmas dinner listening to them discuss phlegm. As a result it takes a lot to squick me when it comes to food.

4.I cannot travel without music. This includes going outside with the trash.

5.My field is 19th Century European art, but my favourite art, aesthetically speaking, is early Medieval European and Byzantine art.

(5.b. My all time favourite art professor once bribed the caretaker of St. Prassede in Rome, so that we, his students, could se the Zenone Chapel at night and by candlelight. It is the first and only time the beauty of art has made me cry.)

This is the nave decorations of the Zenone chapel. See how all the gold makes it almost impossible to photograph? That’s because it is light by electric light – which has a fixed, stable light source. Now imagine all that gold by flickering candlelight, and imagine standing in a tiny chapel where all the walls are decorated like this. Outside the chapel is the cold darkness of the large church room, but inside everything is golden and suddenly the Byzantine idea of creating a piece of heaven on earth makes sense.

6. I sometimes talk back to the people on television. Yes, I know they cannot hear me.

7.I’m unable to watch any episode of CSI or a similar show as the plotlines freak me out.

8.I had three Barbies as a kid, and had made them into Celtic Witch Barbie, My Lady de Winter Barbie and Cleopatra Barbie. My Barbies did not play well with other girls’.

9.I would probably sell your soul for good chocolate – especially White Lindt Chocolate.

10.If a fiction book does not grab me within the first 20 pages, it is highly unlikely I will finish it. However I have been known to drag myself through 600 pages of stunningly boring French Structuralist theory just because it made me mad.


And some links for last:

[ profile] schionutlander has a fascinating post on the art of Otl Aicher. It is based on the life and theories of the medieval philosopher Wilhelm von Ockham, and is a modern interpretation of medieval art. Very interesting!

[ profile] mr_kit has made some nice and creepy icons of Kittelsen's Old Mother Plague illustrations. (which I wrote about here)The icons capture the mood and the composition of the illustrations, all while being clear and a bit frightening. Highly recommended.

Date: 2007-10-09 09:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
EEEE! I love Sta. Prassede!! :) That chapel is awesome - even though we had to wait for 30 German tourists to clear out of there before we could see it!!

Date: 2007-10-09 09:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
YAY! But then again I knew you had excellent, excellent tast! ;D I think that chapel kick-started my great love for mosaics. I liked them before - but after that chapel, and the church as a whole, I was absolutely captivated.
One of my biggest travel wishes is to go to Palermo and see the Capella Palatina.

Date: 2007-10-09 11:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
7.I’m unable to watch any episode of CSI or a similar show as the plotlines freak me out.

Hee! I find CSI has a strange (but therapeutic) effect on me - I fall asleep in 15 minutes flat.. :D I usually watch it "good and proper" on TV , not on computer (our programs show at least 2 CSI a day) when I want to fall asleep quickly. :D

Date: 2007-10-10 09:35 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Hee! But how can you fall asleep to CSI? All the scary killers out there etc.
Our networks show CSI all the time as well. You turn on the tv and there they are. Hmm...

Oh, and "The Wire" s4 is wonderful! I had some trouble getting into season three, but s4 just grabbed me from the first episode. So if you have some spare time in your tv schedule I'd say s4 is highly recommended. ;D

Date: 2007-10-10 01:31 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I love your list so much but this made me laugh the most:

3.My mother and most of my aunts are nurses. This led to spending an entire Christmas dinner listening to them discuss phlegm. As a result it takes a lot to squick me when it comes to food.

I had a room mate who was a nurse and I have a younger brother with whom I would compete to 'outgross' when discussing topics so I'm largely immune these days, which used to really distress a very squeamish cousin who couldn't even hear the word 'gag' when eating dinner without feeling sick :)

Date: 2007-10-10 05:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Hee. Thank you, and I see you know what I'm talking about. I suppose being immune to being grossed out while eating has it's benefits - but it was a hard act to learn.

Oh, and I keep forgetting to mention this but your "home" icon is just so lovely. It's making me all feel all warm and fuzzy inside - and I've never even been to Australia!

Date: 2007-10-10 06:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
4.I cannot travel without music. This includes going outside with the trash.

I am absolutely with you there. If, for some reason, I have to go somewhere - anywhere - without my iPod, I feel strangely amputated and lonely, and I never like the experience.

And I really need to see this The Wire thing. I have a feeling that I might enjoy it.

Date: 2007-10-10 09:52 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I feel strangely amputated and lonely,

Yes, exactly! And without music the world seems to come a little closer, perhaps too close, and suddenly its a hassle to get to where you are going.
Also having playlists and select music available can make any day better. ;)

And "The Wire" is hands down the best tv I've ever seen. Now a lot of people will tell you that - so please don't start believing that the show is therefore pretentious or difficult. It's not. In fact on the surface it is a straight up cops and criminals show with a basic premise of a crime unit in Baltimore trying to catch a drug lord. ([ profile] sarkastic has great intro post to the show here (

In addition to this is the fact that it is inspired by Greek drama and the Iliad, that it uses visual symbolism in a way that would make the most hard-hearted semiotician weep with joy and that after watching three and a half seasons of this show I can honestly say it has never - not once - been bad. It has a consistency in quality which is absolutely breathtaking.
And yes - I am pimping it madly! because every one should watch "The Wire".

Date: 2007-10-10 08:16 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
lalalala, skipping your Wire comments as I'm STILL hopelessly behind,thanks to school. Waaaah!

I need to travel and to study with music. The iPod has changed my travelling life, now that it's so easy to transport my music, yay!

I love CSI (though not Miami). I went through a brief phase when I wanted to be a coroner! I'll commit the perfect murder someday. Plus, CSI is a great metaphor when I'm banging my head against a brick wall working with my students on writing, what with the whole "follow the evidence, see how they hold up AND explain why a slide/blood drop/hair is important and adds to the narrative??" thing.

Date: 2007-10-10 09:21 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
CSI does make a great metaphor - I've never thought about it like that, but it you're right! Hee. Actually it's not the dead bodies that freak me out - but more the insanity of the murderers. There is never a murderer or rapist on that show who does something simple. It's always a strange, psychologically terrifying reason - and that is the aspect that freaks me.

The iPod has changed my travelling life,

So true! I remember the old days - when I carried around a walkman complete with my own mixed tapes. Or the lumbering around of a portable cd-player - with all the extra cd's in the bag. (along with the certainty that the cd you most wanted to listen to was the one you hadn't brought). Now I might get a wee bit sentimental writing about all this - but that doesn't mean I miss it. ;P iPod - never leave me! Hee.

And "The Wire" s4 is just amazingly good. I was a bit sceptical, mostly because I was afraid I'd miss Stringer. Thankfully there was nothing to fear.

Date: 2007-10-11 02:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh man, my iPod froze up on me for the first time yesterday and it was SO TRAUMATIC. *clings to iPod*

I think I'm the only one who seems to be a bigger S1 fan, and I'm really liking what I've seen of S3 of 'The Wire' so far!

Date: 2007-10-12 11:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh noes! Poor iPod! I hope it has recovered now?

I think I'm the only one who seems to be a bigger S1 fan, and I'm really liking what I've seen of S3 of 'The Wire' so far!

I think S1 is amazing, but I haven't seen it in such a long time. I finished season 4 last night, and now I really, really want to see S1 again. There were so many references to the first season I was jumping up and down with glee.

How far have you watched in S3? I need to rewatch that as well. maybe I should just realise I need a full "The Wire" marathon.

Date: 2007-10-16 05:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Sigh. I got like 5 episodes into Season 3, but that was 2 months ago. I may have to start all over again over our Christmas break at this rate!

Date: 2007-10-17 01:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
You must watch season three - and the s4. Because it just keeps getting better. If it's any comfort I spent some time getting into s3. It started a little slow and disjointed - but the latter part is nothing but wonderful.

Also I'm childish and therefore I have to continue the matching icon thing. But it's Stringer! Ah, never have I felt so conflicted in terms of a "bad guy". Oh help - it's the silent and competent thing again isn't it?

Date: 2007-10-18 03:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Heee. Yay for matching icons! I've LOVED S3 so far--I like that there's a bit more humor in it. I just feel like when I watch an episode, it needs my whole attention, and I just haven't felt up to that since school started...

And YES with the silent and competent thing!

Date: 2007-10-10 05:24 pm (UTC)
ext_3752: Concept art of Alderaanian citizen. "We are a retro planet." (Octavia)
From: [identity profile]
Those sound like the best Barbies ever! And I know what you mean about having medical people in the family - my sister and I occasionally ask that we not talk about opening cysts full of squirting pus while we're eating something like mashed potatoes, but usually we just shrug and go on eating.

I've just finished reading Guy Gavriel Kay's Sailing to Sarantium, which is set in a fantasy version of Byzantium with a mosaicist main character. The character spends a lot of time looking at the way light falls in certain places and what that will do if he places these tesserae at this angle - at one point he's figuring out how to make a mosaic torch look like it's flickering when flickering candle light falls on it. (He also spent a lot of time traveling and doing plotful things, though, so now I want to get the sequel where he's going to do a lot more mosaic work.) So that picture really helps me imagine exactly what he's talking about!

Also, very cool links.

Date: 2007-10-10 06:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Those sound like the best Barbies ever!

*g* I had actually painstakingly tatooed the Celtic Barbie with a waterproof pen. To this day I still think she is the coolest of the bunch. And I was so hooked on The Three Musketeers it wasn't even funny. I even wrote Musketeers fanfic - which was thankfully in Norwegian and has never been shown to anyone else. Hee.

talk about opening cysts full of squirting pus

This sounds eerily familiar. Hee. Thankfully my mom is an orthopaedic nurse, so her stories are mostly "And then this guy had broken his leg in three different places and you could see little pieces of bone sticking out". And that isn't so bad - unless you are eating ribs. ;)

And I love Kay's "Sarantine Mosaics". Have you read his "The Lions of Al-Rassan"? That is also captivating - as is "A Song for Arbonne".

Date: 2007-10-10 08:55 pm (UTC)
ext_3752: Concept art of Alderaanian citizen. "We are a retro planet." (Octavia)
From: [identity profile]
No, this is the first Kay book I've picked up. I've been reading good reviews of his work, so I grabbed it while browsing a used book store recently. I was a little leery of the snarky talking bird at first, but it turned out not to be annoying like I feared. And all the mosaic stuff is just so cool!

Date: 2007-10-10 09:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The mosaic stuff is just amazing! As mentioned in the post I love mosaics - so I basically grabbed the book the first time I saw "alternative history, mosaics and court intrigue" as plot words. ;) But I would really recommend his other stuff as well. (except not the Viking book, which I've only heard bad things about.)

Date: 2007-10-11 12:15 am (UTC)
ext_3752: Concept art of Alderaanian citizen. "We are a retro planet." (Octavia)
From: [identity profile]
except not the Viking book

Good to know. I'll try the other ones instead :D

Date: 2007-10-11 12:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Then I'd highly recommend "Lions of Al-Rassan" as it is in the same world as Sarantium, only set in Kay's version of Moorish Spain. Think Alhambra and much goodness.

Date: 2007-10-11 07:17 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, thanks for mentioning my post! *blushes*

And I envy you for this art-history-professor of yours! I wish I had had an equally enthusiastic professor! And this experience with the mosaics in candlelight must have been breathtaking. Now I understand why you like them so much! - I once could see a Baroque church in candlelight and it was really beautiful. It's so much closer to how these buildings probably were seen by contemporary visitors.

I won't say much to your Barbie comment because I and my sister had not only three but probably thirty, all sitting in accordant decorated houses. A lot of these things were antiques (furniture from much older doll's houses) or made by us out of wood together with our father who is really talented with these things. We even sewed a lot of the costumes ourselves, historic ones with crinolines etc. And then we (my sister and I) used to sit in this room and tell us stories inspired by Prince Valiant, Robin Hood, or even the Musketeers. Ahem.

And for the French Structuralist theory you have my utmost respect. That's where I normally give up. If scientific literature is not written in a way that I can understand it I give it maximal three tries before I skip it. Unless it is unavoidable, of course, but than it is accompanied by a lot of grumbling...

Date: 2007-10-17 01:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
It was such an excellent post that it more than deserved the mention!

I once could see a Baroque church in candlelight and it was really beautiful. It's so much closer to how these buildings probably were seen by contemporary visitors.

Oh I would have loved that. All the gilded stucco and ornaments. It hasn't struck me until recently what fundamental effect interior light has on how we view art. The constant, fixed source of electrical light allows us to see details and structures with greater quality - but at the same time it takes away some of the effect all the gold and glitter must have had.

Unless it is unavoidable, of course, but than it is accompanied by a lot of grumbling...

hee. believe me - I DO grumble. Quite a bit. And the French Structuralist theory was nearly the end of me.

Date: 2007-11-23 04:45 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Hi there! I found my way here while searching for fellow Deadwood hoopleheads. :-) And it seems we not only share an affection for Deadwood, but also a special affection for Alma. So I hope you don't mind if I add you! I knew I wanted to add you when I saw some of our shared interests, but then I read this post and thought, "I must add you!" (esp. because of 8, 9, and 10...I'm with you on those.) :-D

Date: 2007-11-23 09:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

It is always nice to meet fellow lovers of Deadwood so I've added you back. (and Alma is great! The first time I saw the series I liked her, but the second time I absolutely adored her. The journey her character makes is fascinating. I'm only sad we will never get to see a season four or a mini series. )
And by the look of things you're right - we do have a lot in common. :)

(esp. because of 8, 9, and 10...I'm with you on those.)

Hee! Good to hear. When I wrote the list I was a bit worried people would go: "Oh help - she is some weird Barbie mutilator." ;P


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