Sunday, July 20, 2008

Past, Paths, and Performance

I have a lot of weird, random memories. Memories that are as clear to me as sitting here, right now, plucking away at my blog. Some of them are over twenty years old. Most of them make sense to me, in their retrospective timelines. There’s one, though, that I really, truly don’t understand.

I was still in Florida, so I had to be younger than nine…and I was at a birthday party of a girl I met while I was in first grade, so I had to be at least seven…beyond that, I’m not too sure what’s what.

The birthday party was at a roller skating rink. I didn’t skate then, so the whole party was kinda moot for me from the beginning. I don’t know if I’d recently realized it, or if it was just high on my mind because I was uncomfortable…but the whole, “I’m fat and not pretty,” thing was high on my mind.

Weirdly, this super attractive teen boy, asked me if I wanted help skating. He took me around the rink a bunch of times, holding my hands and smiling at me. I assume he worked there, that part of him getting paid was helping awkward kids like me, but really, I have no idea.

It’s just one of those things that has always stuck with me. Part of it, I’m sure, is that I really don’t get why this super cute guy bothered. He was (hopefully) far too old to be attracted to me…even if I’d been the type to attract. The other part of it is how special his small gesture was to me. I clearly remember looking up at him—my hands in his, zooming around the shellacked wood—and feeling like a beautiful, worthy person.

It’s funny…out of all of my memories…the ones where people have made such long-lasting impressions on my life…I have this random event swimming around up there. Makes you think about that whole, who do you really remember thing, hu?

With so much changing in my life, right now, I’ve been thinking a lot about what makes a person’s life meaningful. I’ve been thinking about…at the end of the day…what, if anything I want to be remembered for. So very many things spring to mind…different professions and different outlets of creativity…ways to leave a piece of myself on this planet when I’m gone. If my mother has her way, I’ll leave behind a daughter of my own…but I’m not sure that’s my path.

So what is my path? And what, exactly, am I waiting for to find it?

On to less existential things…I saw The Dark Knight yesterday. I was blown away. I’m mean, clearly, any movie with Christian Bale in it is something I’m going to enjoy. He’s just so damn good. I truly believe there is no justice in the world until he wins an Oscar.

Having said this…okay, look, I’m not jumping on the bandwagon here. I held all my reservations about Ledger's performance, until actually seeing it. I wondered if the circumstances surround him…the way it’s his last completed role…if that is what is fanning the fire. It’s not.

Well, it probably is. Much like the whole Rent/Jonathan Larson issue, the award talk and acclaim might be more prominent because of Ledger’s untimely demise, but I do think it would have gotten there eventually. I honestly didn’t recognize Ledger. Not just because of the makeup or the costuming, but because he truly, completely removes himself from his own existing nuances and rebuilds them to a completely new person. The way he speaks (and I’m talking about inflections and facial movements rather than accent here—although that was pretty impressive as well), the way he holds himself, the use of his hands…arms…whole upper torso while he delivered his lines...he just completely OWNED the Joker. Much like Bale took Batman from cartoon to flesh, Ledger took the Joker from Nicholson's comic book characticure to someone who hits every archaic warning button for fear. The story is sloppier than I would have hoped, but Two-Face’s make-up (CGI?) effects more than made up for it. I want more. And, if the applause at the first roll of credits was any indication, I wasn’t the only one who felt this way.

But don’t let me tell you what you want to see, follow your own path.

(Like what I just did there? Way to wrap it up, Ms.I, way to wrap it up.)

Quote of the Moment: "Our new building is very light and modern, and there are glass doors and panels everywhere, which will eventually get some frosting on them, so people don't run into them. However, that has yet to happen...and people are running into things left and right. I can't wait to see how bad it is after a few drinks!"

Soundtrack of the Moment: Metro Station, Shake it
TV/Movie Quote:
The Dark Knight: “Some men aren't looking for anything logical. They can't be bought, bullied, reasoned or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn.”

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