greygirlbeast: (white2)
The last few days, I've been thinking, What am I going to write? What am I going to say? On that day, which is this day. And looking back, I don't think there's much more, for me, to say than what I said a year ago, which is (modified):

Ten years have come and gone. And we have our memories of the horror of that day. And we have the legacy of that day, which is not only our memories of the horror of that day, and our memories of those who died.

We have war in Afghanistan. We have war in Iraq. We have the Patriot Act. We have Islamophobia. We have torture at Gitmo. We have injured and traumatized war veterans returning to a country that will not care for them. We have TSA's "guilty until proven innocent" behavior. We have new memorials, to those who were heroic, and to those who were merely in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Everything has changed.
For in truth, it's the beginning of nothing,
And nothing has changed.
Everything has changed.
For in truth, it's the beginning of an end,
And nothing has changed.
And everything has changed. -- (David Bowie, "Sunday")


And my mind reels at the knowledge that children born that day are turning ten years old today, and they never knew the world before.

As for my personal memories of that day. I watched on CNN, unable to believe what I was seeing, terrified, crying because that was fucking New York City. It would be a week before I learned if everyone I knew in Manhattan was safe. I was living in Atlanta at the time. Kathryn was at a job interview, which was interrupted by the news. That afternoon, with fears of additional attacks and the nearness of the CDC, an obvious and especially terrifying target, we left Atlanta for Birmingham. The flashing traffic signs on the strangely deserted interstate that usually warned of accidents ahead were all reading "National State of Emergency Declared." I remember, most of all and for the first time in my life, seeing a night sky without airplanes.

(Also, you should read this post by [livejournal.com profile] kambriel.)

---

Everyone needs to read this article, "What Teachers Really Want to Tell Parents," unless you already know how bad the schools in America are, and how much of that damage is being done by parents. When I was in elementary school, many – if not most – of my teachers had been teaching (I shit you not) for thirty or forty years. Many had taught my mother. "Today, new teachers remain in our profession an average of just 4.5 years..." And "we" wonder.

---

Good work yesterday.

--

Thank you to everyone who contributed to the Kickstarter for The Drowning Girl: Stills From a Movie That Never Existed. We finished with 301% of the funding we were seeking. I promise you, we'll make the best book trailer in the short and sordid history of book trailers.

In Memoriam,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (white)
I awoke this ayem, sometime before dawn, to my first real New England snow. When I woke again, about an hour ago, it was still snowing. It's still snowing now. The world is white, and all the sharp edges are smoothed away. There is no carnivorous blue sky. There is, rather, a comforting lack of distinction between earth and sky. The rooftops are covered, and the trees, and the lawns. White.

The only really important thing about yesterday is that we finally got to see Tomas Alfredson's Låt den rätte komma in (2008). And wow. A reviewer in one of our local papers wrote, "Who would have predicted that the finest horror picture in years, reminiscent of Val Lewton classics of 1940s Hollywood, would come from Sweden." Well, I might have. Sweden is sort of creepy when you think about it, all those fjords and ABBA and 7th-Century standing stones and what have you. Bang on with the Val Lewton comparison, though. One of the most striking things about this film, which is filled with striking elements, is it's voice. It is so wonderfully soft-spoken. It is a long whisper, punctuated with screams that have meaning because of the whisper. In short, it lived up to my expectation, and I was very pleased with the unexpected gender issues raised in the film. Lina Leandersson, who plays the vampire child, Eli, is especially effective, in her gentle childhood vulnerability and her oddly ancient moments and those scenes where she slips into a feral frenzy. I am pleased with the film's restraint, and by its refusal to submit to either formula or easy morality. And it's just so beautiful. I keep coming back —— in my head, and also when Spooky and I talk about Låt den rätte komma in —— to it's snowy landscapes, its black nights, the smothering cold, and the silence. It's easy to think of many instances when the silence is shattered, but those instances only seem to underscore the totality of the silence, the stillness, the winter that may as well be unending. And, of course, this story permits the vampire to be a vampire. Not a watered-down daemon lover that sparkles by daylight, not necrophilia dressed up as bloodless romance for necrophiles who would rather not admit what gets them hot and bothered (though, it should also be noted that, if Eli is to be believed, she's not actually dead). There is innocence here, and profound corruption. In the end, what Eli truly is remains, at least in part, a secret, one that the film wisely leaves us to sort out for ourselves. Yes, I loved it. I encourage you to see it in the theatre if you can, and, if not, track down the DVD as soon as it's available. Definitely one of the four or five best films I've seen this year. I'm posting the trailer again:




Otherwise, yesterday was just me resting, wishing this part of the semi-vacation did not have to end next week. There was warmed-over chili for dinner (after the movie). I read, first "The aquatic sloth Thalassocnus (Mammalia, Xenarthra) from the Late Miocene of North-Central Chile: biogeographic and ecological implications," and then went back to the long-neglected Victorians and the Prehistoric: Tracks to a Lost World. Late, we read more of The Fellowship of the Ring. Well, Spooky read aloud to me and Hubero. There were pomegranate martinis. We played WoW for two or three hours, and Shaharrazad and Suraa (my blood elf warlock and Spooky's blood elf paladin, respectively) both reached Level 36. I think that if we are to continue playing WoW, we'll be concentrating on our Horde characters and letting the Alliance ones go. The Alliance was sort of icking us both out, anyway. I'll only play Shaharrazad and my blood elf paladin, Hanifah (who happens to be Shaharrazad's kid sister). And that was yesterday, for the most part. It was bitterly cold when we went out last night, the coldest night I've felt since the trip to Manhattan in November.

The snow has stopped, I think. At least for now.

Behind the cut are two screencaps from WoW, because I've never posted screencaps from WoW:

Blood Elves Out for Blood )
greygirlbeast: (hammy)
Because I am such a very forgetful nixar, I neglected to mention in this morning's entry that Spooky's very first doll auction, the one that will determine the ownership of Lisa, ends tomorrow. It now has about 19 hrs. remaining. Have a look. Really, guys. I want this one out of the house. She's started whispering things to me in the dead of night. Not-nice things...

Click here to save me from the dollish evil.

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Caitlín R. Kiernan

February 2012

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