pushing20

maybe all one can do is hope to end up with the right regrets. -arthur miller

1.07.2006

MOVING DAY

It's moving day here at pushing20! Please visit me over at bex.typepad.com, where I'll be posting from now on.

See you there.

1.06.2006

College Football

Now, I'm not a huge football fan. I'm more of a baseball girl, given the option. That said, I've spent a considerable number of hours over the last week parked on the couch watching the various Bowl games, and it's been a good time.

The Orange and Rose Bowls were particularly awesome games. Three overtimes = exciting game, even if you don't give a crap who wins. And UT's comeback in the fourth quarter last night was incredible to watch. I was sure USC had it in the bag when I forget who from UT was taken off the field with his arm in a splint. I turned to Matt, on the couch next to me, and said "Well, at least it won't be his fault that his team lost the championship game. He can just point to his arm and be all, 'I tried! I broke my ARM I tried so hard!'" And then it turns out that USC might be a very good team, but Vince Young is twice that amount of good. Game over.

So I'm all about the watching of the college football. But when it comes to actual real live college football players? I'm fed up with 'em. I was watching tv tonight in my dorm lounge when six football players came in to play beirut and blast really terrible music. So much for Project Runway. Football players on my campus are cute, but generally a menace. In my dorm alone they've caused almost a thousand dollars of damages, but haven't fessed up to it so the cost will be passed on to the rest of us who live here. Considerate fellas.

In conclusion, I like college football best on television. Go away, football players. It's division III, for god's sake. You're not exactly Vince Young over here.

1.05.2006

Brokeback

It's been three days since I saw Brokeback Mountain, and I can't stop thinking about it. Let me first say: See This Movie. It is one of the few recent movies that I wouldn't hesitate to call capital-I-Important.

Heath Ledger has been getting accolades aplenty for his portrayal of Ennis Del Mar, and they are well-deserved. Ledger completely transforms himself in this role; he speaks, moves, and breathes Ennis. As Jack Twist Jake Gyllenhall is, while marginally less brilliant than Ledger, is the character that makes you believe that these two could be in love, if only because you see in his every move how much he himself believes it.

The sheer sadness of the story is what has kept it on my mind all week. It's hard to remember when you watch the movie and are immersed in the Western scenery that the movie takes place in the 1960's up through the eighties. This isn't the nineteenth century, and it can't be dismissed as history. When Ennis recalls the brutal murder of a gay man (and when one is seen later on in the film), the Matthew Shephard connection is unavoidable. A period piece this is not.

Unable to imagine a life together after an idyllic summer on Brokeback Mountain tending sheep, Ennis and Jack part ways. There is no teary goodbye, buy each realizes what he is leaving behind. Jack breaks down in his pickup as he drives away, and in a nearby alley Ennis violently cries and vomits as his reality sets in.

Jack's marriage to Lureen (Anne Hathaway-- watch her last scene, it's brilliant) is probably the most unhappy marriage ever in a Western, next to Ennis and Alma's (the revelatory Michelle Williams) marriage. Ennis and Jack lead terrible lives punctuated by the shocking passion and sadness of their occasional reunions.

Two twentieth century cowboys trapped by society and paralyzed their own lives and fears, Ennis and Jack could have been saved by one tiny thing.


Each other.


At the end of the movie Ennis is wracked by grief after losing the man he always loved, and more importantly the chance they once had together. For the first time Ennis is able to verbalize his twenty-year commitment to Jack, the man who could tritely be called his soulmate. It's a terrible moment, and one that is awesome to watch. Don't miss it.

1.01.2006

Airing Out

Note to self:

If you wake up and your room smells truly funky and your mouth tastes like vomit, you probably threw up somewhere. Even if you don't remember it.

12.30.2005

Commerical Christmas

This time of year always brings with it an enormous glut of holiday-themed TV advertisments.

There's the annual Coca Cola celebration of all things cute and arctic-- this year featuring the "in" arctic animal, the baby penguin. Nothing like coke in old-timey bottles to make penguins and polar bears dance together in harmony. At least that's what my high school bio teacher used to say. Look, Coke is basically responsible for Santa Claus as we know him, and a big hearty Jewish thanks to them for that. But if there's some big Coke scheme to make polar bears the new emblem of the birth of Christ? They got another thing coming.

Seasonal car ads are the worst. Do people actually give their loved ones cars festooned with enormous red bows? The only place I've seen this happen (and I'm using "seen" very loosely here), is on Laguna Beach, which despite being THE REAL OC--we get the message MTV, really-- doesn't exactly represent reality as actual real people know it. I guess I'll believe it when I wake up one morning with a brand new BMW in my driveway with a 6 foot long bow on it.

This year Planter's Nuts joined the game with a little spot featuring Mr. Peanut as a tot. It starts with a wee peanut boy opening his gifts, which turn out to be a cane, top hat, and monacle. A monacle. I haven't seen a non-peanut wear a monacle...ever. Maybe Grover Clevelend or someone like that in a very old photograph. Not exactly every little boy's dream under the tree Christmas morning, is all I'm saying. But then there's a little pull back and we see it's Mr. Peanut watching the old clip with Santa, having a good chuckle. Kudos to Planters for coming out the most tolerable Christmas ad of 2005. I tip my Mr. Peanut-commemorative top hat to you.

PS. Dear Honda: This season is called the Holidays, not the Hondadays. So no more Hondaday carols, please. Thank you muchly.

12.28.2005

ABC's

First, a rant: GPAs are stupid. They are a meaningless average of numbers that aren't necessarily equal in value. They quantify knowledge in a most arbitrary fashion. They have the power make students crazy over hundreths of a point. Worst of all, med schools care about them. A lot.

My grades were posted online today. I got two A-'s in one semester for the first time in college. I still have yet to earn a straight-up A, but college is hard and I try not to get hung up on these things.

The problem with my blase attitude is that when it comes to my bottom-of-the-curve science grades, I feel like my life is totally ending. Okay, so my I'm not going to keel over and die because I got a C in physics 131. And a B in bio 101 is nothing to be ashamed of (though certainly nothing to boast about--and nothing that will pull up my (ugh) GPA). But med schools care about this stuff. Sometimes I really wish I wanted to be, like, a Starbucks barista or a professional reality TV competitor or something. Anything but a doctor. It'll kill me to watch this particular dream go unfulfilled, but with these grades...med schools aren't exactly fighting over white girls with 3.1 GPAs, is what I'm saying.

Tomorrow I'll have some perspective again. Maybe even crack open the MCAT book. But tonight it feels like my career aspirations are spinning down a toilet. Nothing like school to ruin a perfectly good Winter break.

12.23.2005

9021Oh my GOD.

My love for 90210 knows no bounds, and is generally only increased with the absurdity of the plotlines and characters (all even better relived in reruns). By that measure, the episode I watched this morning might be the best one of all, despite it being a total in-between episode where nothing happens.

It's the one where Valerie Might Have AIDS, after sleeping (last episode) with a heroin-addicted photographer with seriously cartoony track marks on his arms that she somehow didn't notice when they had sex and were, you know, naked together. So Valerie goes out with dumb, ugly Noah and falls off a wall and gets a scrape and then flips out when Noah goes near her POSSIBLY AIDS-RIDDEN blood. As part of this magical plotline, David tries to beat Noah up, which is hiiiilarious.

Speaking of Noah, I don't think there is any actor anywhere who looks quite so stupid. Dude perpetually looks like he just got hit in the face with an oak plank and is seeing stars. Plus, he's dating Donna in her red hair phase, which...blech. So this week Donna somehow can't figure out how to get out of the way of a moving car, and her life is "saved" by the British chef whose name I don't remember, and he insists that to pay him back for saving her she has to go on a date with him to make his (witchy-looking) ex jealous. So in the in-between theme, nothing happens between Donna and whatshisname, except the creepy "I Dream of Jeanie"-you-saved-my-life-can-I-fan-you-with-palm fronds? dynamic.

It's also the episode before Brandon and Kelly don't get married. They write each other the worst, ugliest vows ever. Kelly actually wants to use a poem by Deborah Harry in hers. Blondie, people. In her WEDDING VOWS. That's a big, blinking, Times Square billboard that you shouldn't get married. Plus, at this point they've been engaged like four seperate times. Just choose yourself again, ok Kel?

And then there's Steve, who is just a walking pickup line. Even when he's in love with the married chick (who I think went to an acting school where the only things she learned was to e-nun-ci-ate. Without emoting, which I guess I understand when dating Steve Sanders.) Steve? Barf. Just barf.

For an episode where nothing actually happens, it was pretty good. Not every episode can have an almost-wedding, and HIV test, and three breakups. I think tomorrow's might though, so I'll be watching.

12.18.2005

Finally

Finals are a strange time. The main thing to know is that everyone, I mean everyone, is stressed out. Classes end and it's this great rush-- you feel like you've accomplished something, lived through something.

And then you realize that you have 36 pages to write and three exams to take in the next nine days.

So you're on this rush of classes being over, which quickly becomes a comfy slump. In your head it's something like this: "No papers due for three days, no exams for four. Time to obliterate all knowledge gained this semester! Who's up for a movie? How 'bout three movies? With an option for two more." One night Krystle, Will, and I went to see the new Pride and Prejudice, and then came home and watched the whole BBC series. Nine hours well spent.

You can see the panic coming down the road, the sleepless week ahead, but still you resist getting a head start on things. That's just not how it's done. But suddenly you have an exam tomorrow and hellooo, due dates! And everything goes into hyperdrive. Away messages are all fatalistic hyperbole, all dismal page counts and countdowns to exams like they're missile launches. The pile of stuff to read, stuff to write, stuff to study, is so high you can barely see your TV, which is playing the fourteenth episode of Sex and the City you've watched that day, because, well, the library had it and if it's from the library it's like doing work, and maybe I can write a few pages more tonight if I just watch the episode where Miranda and Steve get back together and....you get the idea.

Procrastination becomes an art form, practically a zen thing. You can rationalize anything. We sit in the dining hall for two hours every night, having cereal AND dessert, because it's finals, goddamnit. Calories don't count if they're ingested while studying. Or thinking about studying.

Sometime midweek days lose their actual names, it's just "two days 'til poli sci is due", then "day before physics exam". Those might be synonyms. You haven't showered since...that day the dining hall had Lucky Charms. Yesterday? Three days ago? You are most definitely out of clean socks. Study group after review session after night in the library after study group, interspersed with midnight trips to Dunkin' Donuts and discussions about how screwed you all are.

And then it's over. The bio exam ends and you walk outside and remember what sunlight is. You do laundry, go out for one last dinner all together before the Dish and Jen go abroad. You really have accomplished something. You lived through finals with with your sanity more or less intact.

At least 'til next time.

12.12.2005

CHannukah list (that's with a ch, as in ahhhCHoooooo.)

The semi-annual list of shit I want. (Also known as: very good procrastination technique. Reading period = very little reading happening.)

So, in no particular order, here are a bunch of things that I certainly wouldn't say no to, should someone give them to me this holiday season. In fact, I would write a very nice thank you note on my fancy stationary if I got any of these things.

-Horseshoe Necklace by Early Jewelry

Because it's pretty, okay? All silver and simple. I don't wear necklaces much, but I think I would if i had this one.







-Grey's Anatomy Season 1 DVDs
I'm pretty addicted to this show. The main character is kind of a bore, but the writing is really clever and the ensemble oveall is pretty great. Plus, I'm a sucker for decent medical dramas. Seriously, I started watching ER religiously when I was eleven (and not just for George Clooney, though I had a serious thing for him when I was like 14. We have the same birthday. IT'S MEANT TO BE.) Anyway. Grey's Anatomy is very good. So I want the DVDs.





-Custom Silver Bracelet, by GK Designs
I think this is a really cool update on old ID bracelets. Kinda funky, really excellent for everyday wear. Not sure what I would put on mine though. It's the kind of thing I wish I had a very thoughtful boyfriend to get me, but alas...







-Paspartou Tote, by Rebecca Haas
I love this bag. Much too expensive, but so. damn. cute. In all the colors, please. The straps look like they'd be exactly the right length, and how awesome would that bag be for going to class in Spring?

(I clearly spend too much time on elsewares.com.)



-Holiday Tea Sampler, by Adagio Teas
I've become a prodigious tea junkie in the last six months or so. I have a whole bunch of kinds in my room here at school, and I love having a big old mug of tea while I read for class every night. It's wintertime, which means lots of tea. These holiday teas look especially tasty.





-Wedding Crashers
Not sure if I want this one because it was incredibly funny (which it was, unexpectedly), or because I saw it with J last summer. I've been thinking about him a lot lately, and I think I'm going to give him a call when I'm in the city so we can get together. So I want the movie, and maybe the guy I saw it with. Only one is available at amazon.com, though.







That's about all I can think of now, with the exception of the hundred or so things on my Amazon Wish List. Lots of nerdy American or New York history-type books, DVDs, music. iPod speaker dock. Fun things.

Of course, I still want a baby panda. Coming soon to Amazon.

12.09.2005

White Out

I woke up about fifteen minutes ago, and it's a Winter goddamn Wonderland outside. Seriously, we must have gotten at least four inches of snow in the last six hours since I went to sleep. It's fairly spectacularly pretty from where I'm sitting; the big trees outside my window have every little branch blanketed in the white stuff, and I can't see one footprint on the snow anywhere.

This would all be well and good if I could sit inside all day and read the new InStyle and watch movies, but it's the last day of classes so I think some physics is in order. So Gwenyth Paltrow and my West Wing DVD's will have to wait a few hours.

Weather is awfully pretty, right up until the moment you have to go out in it.