( Where's my lost luggage? Seriously...Collapse )
So apparently I'm a total history nerd. I mean, I do love reading historical fiction books - still about the real world, yet I can learn things! And much more interesting than reading about everyday life. I live in the present, so I'd prefer to read about people experiencing things that I don't have the opportunity to do. I do love my stories abot Tudor England, Egypt, and Arthurian England in particular.
Anyway, my mind was checked out from work, so I took a break and found this most awesome youtube account: historyteachers. They create historical parodies using popular, modern songs. Some of them are particularly genius.
</lj-embed>I'd probably love anything that does a good parody of "Bad Romance."
I enjoy parodies to a certain extent. They have to be well-made (as in matching the syllables and rhyme scheme of the original lyrics). Doing otherwise just is sloppy in my opinion. They also have to be clever. I think these videos do both. And they have the added bonus of pretty good accompanying videos.
Here's to the time that I will spend the next few days watching all of their videos.
I'm going to give two answers. One for a cancelled show (because most of my favorite shows are cancelled :() and one for a show currently airing.
Cancelled show: "Legend of the Seeker" and I'd be a Mord'Sith. I think I'd look good in red leather and they're the most badass females ever. And my cameo would definitely include interacting with Cara and Richard and Kahlan.
Current show:"The Vampire Diaries." I would be totally fine being a human girl tragically killed by Damon.
Happy Thanksgiving! I'm not a fan of turkey or overeating really, but I think that this is one of the most important holidays of the year. Even those who do not live in the United States should create some holiday equivalent. No other holiday really fosters the feelings of family and welcome nearly as well as Thanksgiving does. After all, as the name states, the holiday was designed basically to give people the opportunity to count their blessings and give thanks.
Even though I haven't been to a big family Thanksgiving for the past four years now, even small gatherings with my parents, siblings, and a few friends have been wonderful. I can feel truly relaxed for Thanksgiving in ways that I cannot for other holidays - Christmas included. Although Christmas is probably my favorite holiday, with it comes added stressors such as travel arrangements, gift buying, and gift receiving, too. For Thanksgiving I consider my day well-spent if I simply stay at home with a few others, indulge in lots of guilt-free food (hey, the holiday only occurs once a year), and watch tv or play some games.
I'd like to imagine that others can understand my feelings. What disappoints me, however, is that America is such a commercial holiday that we as consumers are not allowed to take a break, even for a minute. I feel as though as soon as Halloween decorations are taken down from store windows, they are replaced with Christmas ones. Like I said, I love Christmas. I really do. But everything in it's own time. I feel as though Thanksgiving is practically ignored as a holiday. I know, all this stuff about commercialism. A friend of mine who works in retail says that stores need to spring right into Christmas after Halloween for sales-purposes. I can understand that to some degree, but it still saddens me. I feel as though everything is much more rushed in our society as it is. I wish that our holidays didn't have to be as well.
But as long as people are buying into this sort of mentality, it's not going to go away. Another facet of commercialism that's hard to ignore: if the demand is there, bring in the supply! I'm not bitter exactly, just a bit saddened. I can't really pull the nostalgia card, since I don't remember what it was like when I was little, and perhaps nothing has really changed in this respect. But still. I can only hope that this constant need to rush and be on-top - or even a desire to be prepared far in advance - for things will eventually die down.
So it's been about forever and a day since I posted last. I feel like there's not much to say, nor do I have much time in which I can say nothing. I guess it's that I feel guilty writing on here when I should be using writing time to work on pieces for my writing journal. But I can only be overly creative for so long.
My friend keeps telling me I should get a tumblr account, but somehow I feel as though that is simply a more childlike version of livejournal. Something about the format just messes with me. Really, the margins are just huge. Everything seems so simplistic - and no, simplistic is not the same thing as simple. I had a teacher clear up that misconception a few years ago. Simplistic implies more of a derogatory, almost condescending view on something overly simple. I know she uses it to post her poetry and fiction, but really I don't even post my creative works on here, so why in the world would I open another account to not post things? I do like livejournal; I just need to think of better things to post. But really - I would like to know the differences between livejournal and tumblr (besides, of course, the fabulous lj communities).
I've decided that I do like fairy tales actually. I would really enjoy studying them as a professor or something. The histories behind them are fascinating and nearly all of them were not written for children initially. I already know far too much about Beauty and the Beast, but maybe I'll post some fun facts and such on here as an outlet to help process this vast amount of information.
So I'm just rambling at the moment. But Halloween this weekend! I anticipate having a good time in my French courtesan costume. :)
A tiny bit of spam for today: Vote for Eugenides at the YA Fantasy Showdown.
Some very amazing and clever people created the YA Fantasy Showdown as a way to popularize famous YA fantasy characters and create stories about what would happen if they fought against one another. I'm a big proponent of YA fantasy - one of my favorite genres ever and, as I've previously discussed, definitely not an inferior genre. I think it's a great idea to see so many beloved characters in new stories and situations. They had Alanna, Sabriel, Aragorn, Tally Youngblood, Katsa, Hermione Granger, and tons more. The creators created a tournament between 16 well-known YA fantasy characters, and each battle has a story about how the battle could have gone. The battles portray the characters in a surprisingly canon light.
Anyway, the final battle is between Howl Jenkins of Howl's Moving Castle and Eugenides of The Queen's Thief series. I admit I've never read Howl's Moving Castle, but I did enjoy the movie version. Eugenides, however, will always be one of my top YA fantasy characters ever. Any YA fantasy lover should go read the battle between Howl and Eugenides and vote....for Eugenides, of course!
I'm eagerly awaiting a second tournament.
I've been looking for more obscure music recently. Maybe obscure isn't the best word - simply songs that aren't played on the radio 24/7. I like collecting new and interesting music, but I feel as though I'm horrible at doing so. I just never seem to know where to look. My saviour has come in the form of The Vampire Diaries. Besides having a fantastic plot and convincing characterizations, the music is brilliant. Not only does the music perfectly complement whatever feelings the characters have or whatever drama is unfolding, but the songs are all relatively unknown (at least to me). Advertising newer or less popular bands through tv shows is a very good idea for many reasons: the station doesn't have to pay as much to use the music and the band has a chance to become more known.
There are few times I can remember actually listening to the music while watching something. Usually I feel as though music serves as a sort of white noise, present but never supposed to take the focus away from what's happening visually. While watching The Lord of the Rings and Pirates of the Caribbean, I do remember consciously paying attention to the music and how beautiful it was, but that music was instrumental so it's not quite the same. Basically the only music I remember from tv shows is the opening credits. I particularly liked those for Veronica Mars
but whose idea was it to alter the credits for the third season? In one of the beginning episodes of The Vampire Diaries, they played the song "Down" by Jason Walker. It's kind of become one of my favorite songs ever. And I've found tons of other songs through that show that I deem iPod worthy (and I don't put that much music on my iPod, considering how much I listen to). The show actually helped to popularize the song "All I Need" by Within Temptation (the Damon and Elena dancing song) which I've loved for a while now.
So here's another reason to watch The Vampire Diaries: great, relatively unknown music. I can't wait to learn about new songs and bands next season! If only other tv shows could do the same.... I can hope I guess.
Soo...I have been occupied very nicely these past few weeks with something new to do on here: land comms! For those of you who don't know what these are, they're different livejournal communities centered around some particular fandom. The land comms are all divided into teams, so to join the land comm you must first join one of the teams. And basically you can participate in lots of challenges. There are graphics, writing, and games challenges. I'm already addicted to them. The only catch is you must participate on a weekly basis, but that's hardly a hard thing to do.
The Lord of the Rings land comm on here is <lj comm="themiddleearth">. I've only been a member for less than a week, but I love it already. If you like Lord of the Rings, go check it out!
I'm on Team Lorien. Go team! If you like hobbits or elves or men or orcs, give this a go! And don't forget to tell them that <lj user="wondersuntold"> sent you!
The first land comm I joined was actually <lj comm="legendland">. Once I finished catching up with "Legend of the Seeker" I needed to find some new way to get my Seeker fix. And this is definitely the place. So many fun challenges and lots and lots of Seeker fans.
I'm on Team Denna, which is appropriate, considering my Mord'Sith obsession. And so far we're in the lead this round. Go Team Denna! If you like everything and everyone that makes up this fantastic show, then consider participating!
And another thing: I just got this fantastic new hobbit mood theme, courtesy of <lj user="hobbitholes">. It's so adorable and makes me all the more eager to find a mood that accurately describes my feelings.
Edit: Ahh why don't the links work properly? Help?
During my super fun twelve hour car ride to and from vacation this year, I listened to a lot of music on my iPod. While listening to the song "Fight Inside" by RED, I remembered that the band has an acoustic version of the song called "Nothing and Everything," but because I'm cheap, I bought the normal version of their "Innocence & Instinct" CD which of course doesn't have "Nothing and Everything." So one of the first things I did when I got home to internet access again? Listened to "Nothing and Everything" and compared it to "Fight Inside." I like both versions of the song, but surprisingly I found that I liked "Nothing and Everything" more.
It was an interesting assessment to make, because usually I consider the original versions of songs to be far superior to their acoustic counterparts. But my music tastes constantly shift, and at the moment I really love the lyrics. Whenever I like a new song, I always have to look up the lyrics to make sure I know exactly what the artists are saying. In the case of "Nothing and Everything," the lyrics are so heartrendingly beautiful that the acoustic version makes their meaning much stronger and clearer.
The first song that I experienced a sense of ambivalence about whether I liked the original or acoustic version better was Breaking Benjamin's "Diary of Jane." As with RED's "Fight Inside," the original versions are so raw and through those versions the listeners can really get a sense of the emotional turmoil that the lyrics portray. But the acoustic versions allow the actual lyrics to shine through, no longer bogged down by the drums and loud musical instruments. And most of the time, nothing properly expresses the song's message as well as the lead vocalist's voice anyway.
Because these two songs work very well as acoustic versions, I'm curious about other versions. I remain convinced that some songs really do need the full-out instruments to help convey the song's message, such as 30 Seconds to Mars' "The Kill." All of the drum beats and guitars and bass are really necessary for me. Without them, the acoustic version does sound as though it's missing something, instead of transforming into simply another way to convey its message. Maybe the lead singer's charisma and generally pleasant voice quality does have a major impact on the song, even more than I originally thought. I'm sure that the quality of the lyrics also has a big impact. I tend to prefer more thought provoking lyrics myself, so songs that already contain those kind of lyrics have a better chance of me liking their acoustic versions. As a lead singer, I probably would love the chance to perform an acoustic version. I realize that I don't know much about the music industry, but my best guess about the lack of acoustic song versions would be that most consumers have certain notions about acoustic versions, as I did -- that they're watered-down versions of the original. I'm glad that I have been able to alter my perspective on that. I only hope that others can come to realize the sheer beauty that acoustic song versions can contain.
Watching any game is impossible without also hearing the piercing buzz of the vuvuzela. At first, I attributed the annoying buzzing sound to a bad connection or something. The World Cup's in South Africa, so I thought that perhaps the satellites transmitting from down there weren't working properly with the ones that my tv uses. And then my dad told me about the vuvuzela. I wonder how anyone can actually stand being at the games, having to listen incessantly to that noise. And what kind of pleasure can a person really get out of blowing those horns over and over again? Talk about annoying.
I saw this fantastic video that makes fun of the vuvuleza players, and it's also a "Lord of the Rings" parody, so definitely worth posting. And definitely worth a laugh or three.
In unrelated but exciting other news: I just installed an icon-making program on my computer! That means that I can finally start making and posting some icons of my own. I love looking at the pretty icons that others have made and have always wanted to make some of my own. My program’s nothing fancy like Photoshop, but still it will be fun to learn. Given that I’m always computer-illiterate when it comes to new programs and skills, it could be a little while before I have enough icons to post. But look forward to icon posts from me in the future!