Tuesday, March 29, 2005

I am in love

I have an incredibly good looking tutor at university. He has an extremely sexy accent (he's from America) and that almost Mr-Darcy-ish dignity - ie he's nice but he's not silly. And that Italian sort of look with the Zoolander eyebrows. :) Except he is not ridiculous like Zoolander. My friend and I are both in lurve with him, it's so much fun. It feels like we're thirteen all over again. Of course we don't take it very seriously (naturally) but it is honestly so much fun having such a silly crush again. We have both been at different schools for the last couple of years and now we're together again at uni, and it's almost as if we've gone back to the ages when we were separated. Haha we're so pathetic. It's very very fun.

holidays!!!!!!!!!

Tomorrow I am off on my first road trip!! Yippee! My German friend Eva and I are going away for five days - we're staying at Lake Tekapo for three nights and Wanaka for one and it's all very exciting. Almost overwhelming. I feel very independent. I have bought lots of film and I am ALL set. I will probably post a photo or two on here when I get back - that is, if I get any good ones. :) We'll probably go and do a little Lord of the Rings pilgrimage; Wanaka has quite a few places around it, or on the way to it, that were in the film. But we're also planning on going to Lakes Alexandrina and Pukaki, and Mount Cook (Aoraki), the biggest mountain in New Zealand, and several other places. It's been such a long time since I've been in that part of the country and I always remember how beautiful it is, so I'm very excited.

Monday, March 28, 2005

something that makes me frustrated

It's only one 'something', I promise you! There are so many things that frustrate me that I feel the need to complain about, but today, I will only complain about one.

It's this: All these shops in NZ are going all up in arms because they are not allowed to open on Good Friday unless they're 'necessary', like a petrol station or something. This annoys me. I even wrote a letter to the newspaper, first time ever, and I'm going to show you the letter. Yes, I know that sarcasm is the lowest form of wit, and this is sodden with it. However, here it is.

Dear Sir,

I'm glad to hear that some gardening centres (March 28 - A23) and other businesses like Paper Plus in Wanaka (March 26 - A5) are so committed to fighting for their religious rights. Naturally, they and their families will not be touching a single Easter egg or hot cross bun over the Easter weekend. Naturally they will not give or accept a single present at Christmas time, and many New Zealanders will be happy to know that their shops will be open for custom on Christmas Day. If not, it seems like maybe - just maybe - their heroism in opening on Good Friday is just a little bit hypocritical, and really is not so much about religious freedom as the money.

Terrible, isn't it?! I hate being so sarcastic but I was just so annoyed. I'm so sick of hearing waffle from business people about how tuned in they are spiritually and how they really care about the community when all they really care about is MONEY.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

nothing in particular

I am on holiday. And it feels good.

Weird thing is, I'm home alone for the weekend because my parents are on holiday somewhere random. Almost all my friends are at Easter camp or busy, almost all my family are on holiday, etc, so I feel actually a little bit alone. That's okay though; I'm just watching heaps of DVDs and eating. :)

I went to hear this Christian author from England called Adrian Plass speak the other day. It was so SO exciting. He's SO funny, and one of my favourite authors - his probably most famous book is The Sacred Diary of Adrian Plass, Aged 37&3/4, of which he is the main character but everyone else is fictional. I got him to sign one of my books too - SPOKE to him close up - which was very very odd. I actually started crying when I walked out the door. Yes, I know, it's pathetic. I guess it was because it was so exciting, and because he's really helped me through his writing; meeting him face to face was just so cool.

Of course I managed to make a fool of myself though. This is what happened.
Me: "Hi, can you sign my book?"
Him: "Of course. Who is it for?"
Me: "Me."
*wince*
Oh well, he doesn't exactly portray himself as a brain in his books. :)

Friday, March 25, 2005

Silent Keys

The other night you had a dream. You dreamt that you woke up deaf. You couldn’t hear music anymore. You couldn’t play music. All you could do was stare at the keys as you pounded out old, familiar patterns and automatically pushed up, down, up, down on the damper but no matter how hard or loud or long you played, nothing would release the music trapped inside the piano.

It was a nightmare, in fact.

You longed to be blind instead. At least if you were blind you could listen to Bono, sitting in your ear, telling you to walk on and be strong, the same way he always had when something went wrong. You would be able to close your eyes and pretend that if you opened them you could see. The moon would illuminate the darkness in your head as you listened to Clair de Lune; you would cry along with Chopin’s saddest ├ętude and feel lucky, as always. It would be good for you; you would learn to play by ear properly at last.

But you were not blind. You were deaf. Trapped in the nightmare, you wanted to die, because it didn’t feel like you were living properly, without music. Sight was torture because you saw everyone else playing music, fiddling with the radio, whistling along to a tune, and every part of you tensed as you tried to hear it. But you couldn’t. There was no pretending because in the life before, hearing was like the blood running through your veins. And all you could look forward to were years and years of silence, because you were young and deafness is apparently not fatal. Not even degenerative.

You felt like Beethoven, trying so valiantly to conduct his orchestra, so much more of a genius than anyone in the audience ever would be, but at a disadvantage to every single person there.

You did wake up. And you could hear. But now you are perpetually terrified that you will lose your ears. You make bargains with God, and you ask Him, if He has to take away one or the other, please let it be your eyes. You feel even more absent from your friends. They don’t understand music. For them, music is something one can use or create; they don’t understand that the notes have always been there, that you are merely unlocking a door and freeing them, that in truth the music is using you and bewitching you. You are disgusted, incredulous when they say they don’t listen to music much; you try to understand and to tell yourself that everyone is different and what does it matter if they prefer mountain-climbing to Mendelssohn. You hate the way they look so unaware when you talk about good acoustics and how they come away from Andrew Lloyd Webber saying there was too much singing. Yes, you know you are being irrational, snobbish, unfair. And you don’t care. Instead you worry incessantly.

But even through all of this, you are aware of a dim understanding that should you lose all you are afraid of, music could never quite desert you. Music is in everything.


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Hopefully that worked. Hope you enjoyed it! I hope the photos came out!

Happy Easter

Yay, Jesus is risen!! Every time I think about this, I always get excited. He is not in the tomb, he is risen! YAY! Technically one is not supposed to think about this until Easter Sunday, but I think Jesus would rather I thanked him for three days rather than felt miserable for two that he had to go through all that, and then thanked him on one. :) Of course it's not that simple, but oh well. I think my point is clear.

This has no relevance to Easter at all: I'm going to post another short thingy like my U2 short thingy... hang on... should be on here soon.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Eureka!

I just remembered the name of the little plastic dish I was trying to make a metaphor out of a few posts back - PETRIE DISH. I think that's how you spell it. *Allie sits back, feeling satisfied*

Monday, March 07, 2005

Because

Here's the rough draft on a piece of writing I'm working on. Okay, sure, it's not a REAL piece of fiction; it's not even an essay. But here it is (hope you enjoy!):

BECAUSE

U2 is my favourite band because.

They don’t contrive. They just make music. They are seriously into it, too – if you saw Edge discussing the different chords they could have used for Sometimes You Can’t Make It On Your Own which didn’t quite feel right, on the DVD that came with the album, and then you saw my brother-in-law unable to tell the difference between the chord sequences, and unable to figure out why it was all so important, even when he played that part over three times, you’d understand. They don’t just slap some words on top of some music. Everything is significant. They stretch the boundaries of effort; they are sitting on a fence that runs along the field of trying-too-hard and the field of not-quite-there.

Their music is not a template. Slow songs, fast songs; happy songs, sad songs; inspirational songs, who-cares songs. There is always a song by U2 that can fit my mood, unless I need utter silence. U2 effortlessly goes right to the extreme of dramatic/melancholy and boomerangs back to ridiculous/pointless. And they’re credible every place they go.

Bono appears to sound like he can’t sing that much better than Joe Bloggs, but then he’s live and an opera singer. Edge’s guitar riff is nice, but then it’s live and it pushes the blood through your veins. You don’t really notice the bass until you hear Adam live and realise how useless the music would be without it. Then you hear Larry drumming in Desire on stage in Boston and wonder how you could ever have not noticed that song.

You have to like U2 by principle as well as by taste. Any band that has been together for so long and continued to make such music, doing it their own way, differently every time, has to be admired. Then there’s the fact that you can’t actually fully understand the ideas behind every song because Bono’s so bloody intelligent he can be unintelligible. You never get some boring, immediately understandable lyric with bad rhyme and dull ideas. I have to admit that one can never know, but it seems to me that they are totally genuine people. Bono especially. Maybe he smokes and drinks and swears, but I feel he’s a lot closer to Jesus, and more willing to go out of his way for Him, than a lot of ‘godly’ people who have never touched a cigarette in their lives.

They make me feel better. On moving house, I was a wreck. Then I heard Walk On. Everything Bono sang felt like it was directed at me, sitting there with a headache from crying too much. They don’t laugh at me for feeling the way I do about things. They change the way I think and live; generally, I hope, this is for the better. They feed me. Perhaps I’m going mad, but I feel like I could tell Bono all my secrets and he might understand some of them. They’re so fun. What other band have I heard of that does cool stuff like coming onto stage in a giant lemon, and what other lead singer can pull off pretending to be a fly or a devil called MacPhisto, then have discussions about third world poverty with George W. Bush?

Sometimes I like them just because I do.

not so grumpy any more

It's Monday! Mondays are either extremely depressing because you realise you've got four more days of pain until the weekend - or they're very happy because you are feeling particularly bright-eyed, bushy-tailed. In this case, I'm happy. Not for any particular reason. Just because I have had enough sleep, I'm keeping up with work, I had a little bit of social interaction this weekend... and so on.

On the other hand, I'm depressed. Because the competition on the radio that my friend and I were destined to win - trip to London to see U2 live, plus $10,000 - was won by someone else. Some stupid woman called Julia. She probably doesn't even like U2. What is most frustrating is that I left the radio to go have breakfast, came back ten minutes later, and the competition was all over. After I'd been waiting by the radio for hours the last few days.

Oh well. That's fate. I'll just have to go see them in Oz. (As in, Australia.)

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Grump

Firstly, my American Literature lecturer is TOO INTELLECTUAL. We're reading Walt Whitman's poem Song of Myself, and I hesitate to say it but here it is - I HATE IT. I think it's a load of bollocks, mostly; it's too long; it's just NOT my cup of tea. I like good old Shakespeare and Donne and Tennyson and so on. I love sonnets. But my lecturer thinks it's all marvellous and waxes lyrical about it in every class - never mind clear, concise notes that one can write an essay from! That's not artistic enough! Instead, he says things like, "Humanism galvanised the American people" (or something along those lines) which is completely unintelligible, and anyway, he's already onto the next horrible sentence.

Secondly, although I am very much enjoying playing recorder in a quartet for background music before an outdoor performance of The Merchant of Venice for a week, the guy who's in charge of the music is driving me INSANE. He is just so pretentious. One of those people who think they're a maestro but can't keep in tune. *boils in anger* I have got to stop thinking about this or I will become very bitter.

Oh well, on the bright side of things, I joined four university clubs today!! Amnesty International, United Future (a political party who has a university club), Navigators, and International Christian Fellowship - the last two are Christian groups, which should be obvious, at least for the latter one. I'm excited about getting involved! I'm also going to join the choir, yay!

Writing this blog felt like a massive mood swing.