Monday, 16 March 2009

We are moving

Some of you would have realized that I was maintaining two blogs (actually, it's four blogs, but that's another story). I was struggling to update both of them, but, most importantly, I was also struggling to remember why I ever thought I needed that many. Oh, I know there was a reason that made perfect sense at the beginning. But no more. This one, and Cuttings on a blog, especially, seemed to have lost their initial reason to exist. I was beginning to feel a bit schizophrenic, and worse, dishonest, about having both. Initially, Some of those things was going to be more serious, I wanted to post about my favourite things and those included books and films. Cuttings on a blog would be more visual, lighter, and more fun! So I'd be talking about the film The Class here, and about Confessions of a Shopaholic there. Because, yes, I saw both and enjoyed both.
I'm a gemini, you see, and alhough I'm not sure I believe in horoscopes, I definitely see two sides of myself. There is one, who reads (or tries to read) the right books and watches the right films, and the other one, who reads Vogue and every other lifestyle magazine that Borders stocks, as well as being interested in fashion, and other beautiful things, and who can be quite silly.
I like this about myself, but over the years, some of my friends have struggled with it. Depending on where or how I'd meet them, they would be surprised, confused and almost annoyed, when they saw a glimpse of the other me. And so, in many ways, I got used to compartmentalize myself. Of course, my real friends know both sides of me (in fact, all sides of me!) and simply think I'm crazy. So, welcome to crazy me! If you head to Cuttings on a blog, you'd find a mix of everything that I like and inspires me, from serious books to silly films, because I'm made of all and some those things.

Monday, 2 March 2009

Learning

I've said it before. I love learning new things. Normally, if I want to learn more about a particular writer, or history period, I'll start reading about it or do an evening class, all very intellectual ways of learning, as opposed to learning to DO something.
Lately, I've found myself very interested in two things I know nothing about: textiles and book binding. As always, I headed to the library and found things on these subjects (yes, I love using the library, and yes, books are always my first port of call), and then I heard about this workshop happening in London and jumped at the chance!


Prints, Patterns and Patina - a workshop with Martin Bergström

I booked myself a place in this workshop at the Fashion and Textile Museum in London and I can't wait! With everything else I'm doing at the moment, I didn't want to commit to weekly evening classes, but doing a workshop or learning day here and there would be a perfect way to learn more about these things! I'm very excited to do this first one!

And, of course, it's the perfect excuse for a day in London (may even make it a weekend) and a browse around the museum.

Friday, 27 February 2009

If you really want to hear about it...

I have finally finished reading The Catcher in the Rye for my Reading Dangerously Challenge. As I said, I read this years ago in Spanish, but I most definitely didn't get it, and in fact, could not remember very much of it.
"To tell you the truth", I was not impressed at first this time either. I just wasn't interested in Holden's ramblings and was losing all my patience with him. But suddenly, after his conversation with a cab driver about where the ducks go in winter, I was strangely hooked. I was back on my teenage years, and I felt the pain of feeling that nobody cared, that nobody understood, and that I was alone. I found myself nodding when he said things like
"All you have to do is say something nobody understands and they'll do practically anything you want them to."
Because it's just so true. And the pain, the confusion, and the self-awareness is so real.
Towards the end, though, I started getting tired of the self-pity. I could see how Holden was spiraling out of control, and I lost my patience with him. I could not understand his resistance to grow up, and I wonder if that comes when reading this book now, because I now know that, despite the fact that adult/real life is, it's so much better than being a insecure teenager with an identity crisis.
If it's a while since you read this, read the digested version from The Guardian here. Hilarious.

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Twitter and cool graphics

I love Twitter, and I know the basics of how it works (although I know there is sooooo much more you can do with it that I haven't grasped yet. I'm still learning...) This video only explains the basics, but it's so well explained and the graphics are so cool and sweet, that I've already watched it several times.

Twitter in Plain English from leelefever on Vimeo.

From Noquedanblogs

Monday, 23 February 2009

Sesame Street

Of course, I looooved Sesame Street when I was a child, except I knew it as Barrio Sesamo, which translates as Sesame Neighborhood. Funny, uh? This was huge everywhere and of course, Spain was no exception! But I didn't know until recently that this wasn't a Spanish product. I think it was an episode of Friends, where Phoebe is watching it with little Ben, that made me finally accept it. I think I didn't want to know before, really.
We had all the American characters, but with different names, either translated into Spanish (Cookie Monster was El monstruo de las galletas) or with different Spanish names (Bert and Ernie were Epi and Blas). We also had some local recurring characters! And even though now I'm all for watching the original version of films and TV programmes, and I don't mind subtitles, this is the one thing I don't like in its original English. It feels WRONG! Epi and Blas did not talk like that! I don't want to change my childhood memories of it!
So, anyway, the reason I was thinking about this was this article on CNN about the background of some of the characters. It's pretty surreal.

Monday, 16 February 2009

Sit and experience

"I fear we no longer take the time to sit and experience"

She had decided to stop, to look around her, to feel, to laugh and cry. To pay attention. But, after a while, everything was a blur, life rushed back in, and she couldn't stop. She didn't have time to look around anymore. No time for flowers, or colours. Stones or tress. No time for lazy breakfasts and long walks. No time to enjoy.
And then, she remembered. She had to take the time to sit and experience.

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Stuff


Like so many others in the blogesphere, I'm trying to consume less, starting with a month of not buying anything. If I'm tempted, I'll watch this video again and I know I'll change my mind straight away. To watch and know where your possessions come from, click here.

Monday, 9 February 2009

Some of those films: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

I've just seen The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. A magic story about time, love, family, American history... About life and death. About old age, and young age. About someone aging backwards while all the people he loves grow older. About mortality, and the importance of making the most of life.
The fact that Brad Pitt's character ages backwards is actually not that important for most of the film, as he seemed to go through the same stages of life that a boy growing old would do. It's only when he becomes a father that he starts really thinking about the consequences of growing younger. I felt that was one of the problems with the film, the characters were rather uninteresting, bland, with nothing much to say. So much so, that not even great performances by Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett could save them.
The film is beautifully shot, and the images sometimes told the story better than words... and perhaps that was the problem. During the film, I kept thinking there was something wrong, something banal, boring about it. Of course, it was only when I read that the screenwriter was Eric Roth, who also wrote the most boring film in cinema history ever (yes, Forrest Gump) that I understood. As much I was enjoying the cinematography and the acting, there were several moments when I just wanted the movie to end. I looked at my watch (of course, never a good sign) about an hour and a half into the film and thought, OMG, and the love affair hasn't even started yet!
There were, however, charming scenes, and the sad but beautiful ending made leave the cinema thinking about life, the randomness... and the beauty of it.