#10: Summer Is On The Way!

I forgot how much I love Spring and Summer, the smell of the air, the bright sun, the air of happiness that permeates throughout. I used to be a Winter person, I loved the mysterious cold night air, I loved the cool breeze and the yellow leaves lying all over the ground during the Autumn, the excitement for Christmas and the mystery that seems to surround the two end-year seasons, but now I think I’ve become more of a Summer person. I’ve just been remembering Spring and Summer of last year, and I didn’t realize then how much I would come to look upon those times with joy. One thing is certain: this will not be a year of confusion and doubt as last year was, but of hope and happiness.

Today is lazy day, but that’s alright. I’ve had a wonderful weekend with my boyfriend and I’m very much enjoying this work-free week with him. Well, work-free for me at least. I got a bit of exercise to day, I walked around the block a few times, which is really more an excuse for me to listen to music than it is to get exercise. I ended up peforming a pretty cool concert in my mind, made up completely of cover songs (which is something that I want to do one day), and it got really good.

It started to materialize around the “rock section”, and Jimmy Eat World turned into Paramore, which then turned into MIKA. During one of the songs, I think Crushcrushcrush (aforementioned Paramore song), the band all changed on stage, which I thought made a much more interesting outfit change during a show then leaving the stage, but it was kind of incorporated into the music. I also thought of perhaps there being a break in the show where I sing a song acapella (Bus Stop by The Hollies) to give everyone else a chance to set up for the next section. I was also imagining the show as an album, and there was an Act I and an Act II, which I thought seemed pretty cool.

So back to the description of the show: I will at this point have already done my (or our, I can’t figure out if in the fantasy I’m a solo artist or a part of a band) first album, and my hair will be somewhat lengthy as it is now. So, during Happy Ending, which is the above mentioned MIKA song, I’ll be playing a keyboard while someone is slowly shaving my head during the performance. I like this because it’s very symbolic and goes well with the song, it’s a metaphor for losing your dignity and a part of yourself. During the head-shaving, the barber will accidentally cut me (and since it’s planned now, it isn’t an accident anymore) and cause a line of blood to be going down my face while I’m singing, which I like even more. Then, at the end of the song, during the choir section, I’ll stand a gospel choir clad in blue robes will come out onto the stage and I’ll sort of be swallowed into the choir as they walk past me, dissapearing and holding my hand in the air while singing. And during the final section, two people will be grabbing me within the choir, and throw me on the ground in front of them while they’re singing, and rip my clothes off while I struggle, and finally during the last moments of the song, a white sheet will be placed over my body but not my face, and I’ll have this generally dead expression on and the lights go out.

After a few minutes, I’ll begin playing Jewel’s Foolish Games and the lights will come back on [note: candle light!], revealing me seated at the piano (not the aforementioned keyboard, but a grand piano) in a white sheet; I’m thinking about the sheet being large enough to cover most of the stage. This section isn’t as clear in my mind, but the violin and cello players are wearing red and green ornamented kind of marhcing band uniforms, and there are white clad women who are laying on the floor when the lights hit them, and throughout the song a sort of performance happens, where the women hold the one in the center up, with the help of a male dancer in white, and while she’s lifted people will come and begin putting makeup on her and dressing her, so that she is being dressed as a geisha. In the final moments of the performance, she will be on her own feet and walk toward the crowd, and she’ll be crying, and she will turn and exit the stage, the dancers following her.

After this I finished the concert off with Lady Gaga’s Telephone, and it was more or less a stage version of the music video I have in my mind for the song. After it was over, though, I wasn’t done walking around the block so I kept adding some extra songs, in the next one me and MIKA (who did Beyonce’s part during Telephone) are sitting at the grand piano along with my boyfriend and some woman, and we’re all singing and playing Queen’s Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy, and my band mates appear on the side of the stage and sing during the bridge.

There was a song somewhere where I crowd surfed, I think it was Jimmy Eat World’s Bleed American, and I involved the audience during Fall Out Boy’s I’ve Got All This Ringing In My Ears And None On My Fingers. Oh yes, and I also performed Golden right before that one, which is another Fall Out Boy song. After everything’s done, I sort of did this thing where I was running through the crowd and singing Charlotte Sometimes’ AEIOU, and the crowd follows me out into the lobby area of the building and we go up the stairs, and I interact with various people in crowd, at one point I crowd surf my way back down a winding staircase, which I found to be the coolest part.

I do quite enjoy my imagination.

So now, the video for Telephone. It’s got a few key bits in it that haven’t been arranged perfectly yet, but here goes. The beginning features me laying on a bar with other people all around me on the barstools, I think they’re asleep, as I seem to be (except for the fact that I’m singing), and then a huge barrel of alcohol is poured all over me, and perhaps other people, but one of the bits involves me having some kind of water or something poured all over me. Another bit is the “cell phone pool”, it’s like a ball pit except that it’s filled with all kinds of different cell phones, and a lot of them are all going off, so there’ll be lights all inside of it (the calls are all coming from Lady Gaga, when there’s a closeup on some of the phones). In the next section of the first chorus, I walk in a straight line with people lined up in pair on either side of me, snapping my fingers to the music, and every time I snap, the couples on both sides of me grab onto one another, kissing, holding, etc. And at the end of my runway walk I smile and then you only see me from the side with my back to the camera as I grab onto something and am pulled up out of view.

During the next section, whoever is being Beyonce in the video will come in through a side door and do their part, I haven’t got too much planned for this yet except that Beyonce Person may have a person on either side of them, kind of like a mini posse. After Beyonce Person’s section, I begin singing again (Gaga’s next part in the song, “Not that I don’t like you I’m just a party…”), and everyone is looking around to see where my voice is coming from, while Beyonce Person looks up into the incredibly high ceiling (which you cannot see an end to) and sings back to me their part. The dancers all begin dancing toward the camera while Beyonce Person keeps their back turned, and then finally I emerge by falling on bungee chords out of the ceiling in a magnificently high fall, and when the chorus begins the bungee chord reaches it’s limits and starts pulling me back up, so that I’m swaying like a pendulum, and when I begin to move back up I spin and make some kind of pose while I’m flying through the air. During this section I’m up on the bungee chords dancing in the air while Beyonce Person (now facing the camera) is dancing with the other dancers and I’m flying around above them doing aerial dances.

When this section is over, me and the bungee chord drop from the ceiling again, and this time the camera comes with us, and on the way down to the bottom, I’m doing more aerial dancing, but I’m upside down and headed for the ground, and I haven’t decided how to the landing will go, but in one idea I was cut loose from the bungee chords and caught myself on a pole by the legs (which is very unlikely), but I may also just be close to the ground and be kind of jerked around before cut loose, and then crawling dramatically for the door (because the dancers and Beyonce Person have all walked out the front door).

In the final section, we’re outside, and it will cut to Beyonce Person or myself standing in a round stone area with people in positions like roman numerals and me or Beyonce Person in the center, cutting to different shots of whoever is in the center standing in different positions, their shadow being cast onto different numbers (which are the people posing as numbers), making a human sun dial.

There is a danceoff scene outside the front door of the club, for some reason the outside is snowy, but only until you get a few feet away from the club, from there it’s grassy and bright, but that makes this scene work better anyhow (the sun dial section is outside in a grassy, sunny area). Me and Beyonce Person each have dance crews behind us (Beyonce Person may only have his/her original two, I’m not sure), and there will be dancing and choreography as before during the final section, and then at the very last part (“‘Cuz I’m out in the club and I’m sippin’ that bub and you’re not gonna reach my telephone!”) We will do these crazy fast dances against one another an end with our fists up, or arms out, or however our respective dances end, and mirroring the moment in a samurai movie where both opponents slash one another and appear to have done no damage, but then one of them falls over dead, one of us will fall over too, having lost the apparently fatal danceoff. The original idea for the end was just everyone dancing outside in the snow and me falling over into the snow and the camera panning out from me at the end, because the very last word in the song, “telephone,” has an effect on it so that it sounds like someone ripped the power chord out from the song and it just kind of quickly dissipates into nothing. Either way, someone will fall over in the end, whether they actually died from the danceoff is up to the viewer to decide (in Jesse world we all live happily ever after) and there will be panning out from whoever fell into the snow while the harp plays at the end.

Pretty neat, huh?

What else to talk about? I’m looking forward to seeing my boyfriend tonight and having a great night with him. I’m a little ways into Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden, it’s taken me so long to read it because I haven’t sat down and devoted a lot of time to reading, and because I got a new book, if you remember me talking about The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor. I’ve made it through Part One of the book, and I’m unimpressed. It reads like a teen fiction novel, and well, it is a teen fiction novel, but I just have a general dislike of teen fiction. Why, you ask? I would be glad to tell you.

Teen fiction novels, along with family movies and television shows that are geared toward a teenage audience, often miss the point. People want to write things that connect with a young audience, but the thing is, teenagers are interested in sex. Lots of it. Teenagers love sex. It’s the number one thing on our minds all the time up until you’ve gotten past about eighteen, and it’s not like it goes away then, we just learn to focus on other things. From ages twelve to eighteen, sex is pretty much the main thing on a teenager’s mind. Now, don’t think I’m saying it’s the ONLY thing on our minds, and it’s always the most predominant, we of course are complex human beings with other things on our minds and in our hearts other than sex, but it is always somewhere on the top five list of things we are concerned with. I know I can only speak for myself, being a teenage male, but teenage males tend to be very interested in sex, as I know from personal experience and the general consensus of people regarding teenage men.

The point I’m trying to make here is that teen fiction books usually do what children’s books do: pretend that sex doesn’t exist. This puts me off from a book more than anything, and it’s primarily the reason why I dislike the Disney Channel and Nickelodean, who makes shows supposedly for teenagers, but really they’re just teenagers acting the parts of ten year olds. Not all teen fiction does this, and in fact, The Looking Glass Wars hasn’t entirely done it from what I’ve seen so far, and of course in Part One the main characters are ages 9 and 12, and slightly sexual things are mentioned.

So, in conclusion of my rant on teenage fiction disregarding sex, by far one of the most important things to a teenager, I would like to say that I’m not throwing The Looking Glass Wars into that category of pretending sex doesn’t exist. However, it does have a very childish feel, and the writing in general isn’t very elegant, it’s too matter-of-fact, it’s a bit like Narnia in that respect, and while the storyline isn’t uninteresting, it all happens way too fast. On top of that, there are the action scenes, which all read like a secene from a kids anime show or a battle from the Power Rangers series. Characters have unrealistic superhman abilities, and even though I like that concept, it’s done in a way we’ve all seen before, and it’s so cliche that it is at times nearly gag-worthy (the captain of the Queen’s guard, Hatter Maddigan, a kung fu version of the Mad Hatter, at one point pins someone to a wall with throwing stars by all ends of their garments. How many times have we seen that done? And furthermore, how unrealistic and unnessessary is it?).

The most interesting point of the story is that it actually plays into reality, Princess Alyss Heart leaves wonderland and is adopted by the Lidell family, becoming Alice Lidell (though she never forgets how properly to spell her name), and eventually meets the Reverend Charles Dodgson, who writes under the pseudonym of Lewis Caroll. I don’t know too much about this, but I’ve that Lewis Caroll was a very odd man (obviously) who had some characteristics not unlike those of a possible pedophile, he supposedly wrote Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland for a little girl down the street. The book plays on this and makes it very apparent that the character of Lewis Caroll is more than casually interested in Alyss.

In a ten page long hostile takeover, the valiant Queen Genievie’s wicked sister Redd, who was banished from the kindgom, storms the city, kills almost everyone in the castle, and claims the seat of power. It’s all mildly action-packed and altogether just not for me.

I don’t think this is a bad book, and it’s probably the perfect book for young teenagers, about 13 or 14, but for any reader looking for a thought-provoking and truly gratifying look into an ethereal world like Wonderland, it’s just not very impressive. I should make it known that this is all from my impressions of the book based on Part One, and therefore it not a complete review, but after Part One I basically lost interest in the book. Luckily, the book reads very fast, chapters are only four to nine pages long, and while that isn’t a problem, the last time I tried to read a book like that it was Maximum Ride, and that was just horribly written, it sounded like a more gramatically polished version of something written by a second grader who’d been watching a lot Saturday Morning action shows. In a way, this book reminds me of that kind of imaginative but unelegantly-written written fantasy novel.

One thing I can say for it, the art is pretty nice, especially the picture of Redd on the cover of the second novel, Seeing Redd. I don’t want to give the impression that the book is just awful, but I don’t think it’s right for me. If somehow the author should ever read this, I wouldn’t him to think I’m encouraging people to hate the book, because I’m not, it’s a good book for younger teens (and I guess that’s why it’s in teen fiction), it is an interesting twist on Wonderland, and it is entertaining, it just doesn’t quite rub me the right way.

Memoirs of a Geisha, however, is coming along quite nicely, and I read a bit of it every day, even though I’m only on Chapter Four or so, but it’s a very interesting story. I’ll let you know more about it as I read.

Wow, this was a long one, huh? I’ve had a few more ideas for things, but the only one coming to mind right now isn’t very good and probably won’t be written, so I’ll leave you with these things to marinate in. Word count made it all the way to 3,000!

Oh yes, I haven’t even talked about music yet! I’ve been looking into a few musicians whose albums I want, and one of the most promising is Rodrigo y Gabriela. They did a cover of Oogie Boogie’s Song on the Nightmare Revisited album, and it was one of my favorite songs on the album. They’re a duo of guitarists who play off of one another, and it’s just really incredible and it’s not something that you hear very often, duo guitars are awesome.

I’m also thinking about buying La Roux’s album, I saw the video for the song Bulletproof and it’s pretty good, not amazing, but I still think I might enjoy the album.

Also, there’s a band called Kiss Kiss, and their song Satelitte was on a bonus disc from Eyeball Records that came with my copy of My Chemical Romance’s first album, I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love. Satelitte is my favorite song on the disc, and it makes me hopeful for their album, whose name I do not have on hand.

I also may look into getting an Electric Six album, and on that thought, Tenacious D is a pretty good band but I’ve never gotten one of their albums either. I’ve also never bought Avenged Sevenfold’s first album, even though it had a few songs on it that I liked. Hmm…

MIKA has two live DVD’s, Live in Cartoon Motion and Parc De Princes Paris (which apparently comes in a deluxe harback edition with a lot of art in it), which I think I may get, although the latter DVD takes priority over the former.

In the way of EP’s, Paramore’s Summer Tic EP is impossible to find other than downloading it, and it has the song This Circle on it, which is one of my favorite Paramore songs, just because it has a nostalgic quality for me and reminds of me of my obessive Paramore days. They do however have another live album called Live In The UK, at the Manchester Apollo, which I’ve known about for a while, and may get, it’s a live album of songs from All We Know Is Falling, which a very good album that has a special place in my heart.

MIKA has an EP called Songs For Sorrow, that apparently has a booklet that’s like 73 pages long or something and filled with artwork, and I just think that’s worth getting, I’m glad someone put so much effort into an EP.

I’ve kind of been wanting Sara Bareilles’ first album, Careful Confessions, for a while, but it’s muy expensivo. She also has a live CD/DVD called Between The Lines: Live at the Filmore that’s pretty good, but the thing is, I saw it once in Wal-Mart a couple years ago, and it was in a CD case, not a DVD case, and if you search for it, it’s very hard to figure out which one is the copy in the CD jewel case. To make it more confusing, there’s a Blu-Ray version with a bonus CD, but I don’t want the Blue-Ray with a bonus CD, I want the CD/DVD in a CD jewel case! She also has some other old albums/EP’s, but I haven’t looked into them too much.

I do like singles, and if you type in any of your favorite artists into Amazon.com, you will find a limited selection of a few, or maybe more than a few albums. But if you try Amazon.co.uk, you’ll get all of their singles and some albums that aren’t in America (i.e. Paramore’s Live in the UK), and I saw singles for MIKA and Paramore. Sure it’s like five dollars for a single with a song on it that I already have, but I just enjoy having it in the collection.

And then of course we have DVD’s. My Seventh Season of Will and Grace finally came in the mail and my boyfriend and I been having a great time watching it. Next I want Season Four, and hopefully, all of them some day. I like TV shows on DVD, and I’d like to have Roseanne, That 70’s Show, more of Frasier, possibly some Friends, and I’m sure there are more. I’d also like to get the movie Tin Man, it’d make quite a nice addition to my collection of DVD’s.

Think of all the other things I could be spending money on besides my media collection. But who doesn’t love a good collection of music, movie, and books? It’ll pay off one day when we’ve got a nice living room to stash it all in.

Well, I can’t think of much else, and at this point we’re up to over 3,700 on the word count and rising, so have a great day everyone, be safe, love yourselves and one another, educate yourselves, and tell someone you love them today!

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