May 31st, 2004

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Well, I'm back from Charleston! Got back today just around 5 p.m. and it's pretty much taken me all night to recover from the long drive, around 5 1/2 hours. Caleb wasn't much phased by the trip since he makes drives like that for work but for me it was really draining and head-inducing. Oh, well, it was all worth it, as the trip was quite a nice one. I've wanted to go up there for quite a few years and now I've gone and it was every bit as nice as I'd expected.

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I'm doing like 5 picture posts after this, so get ready...

Charleston | Churches and Graveyards | People Pics | Caleb Looking Hot | I'On Village

P.S. Sorry versailles_rose that I never called. We probably walked right by you, as I know we went on Meeting Street quite a few times. We were really caught up in things, however, and both times I thought of calling it was late at night and by this morning it was too late (plus I read you were asleep anyway). Oh, well, obviously we did have fun!
  • Current Music
    "How Can You Possibly Know How I Feel?" - Morrissey
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Picture Post - Charleston

Charleston is spectacularly good-looking, lively, extremely clean, friendly, and above all, civilized.

Having now visited New Orleans and Savannah, both of which are colonial cities with a large number of preserved buildings, I'd have to say it battles N.O. for top place, leaving Savannah in the dust simply because both cities are so much larger. Unlike N.O., however, Charleston doesn't bring on that depressing "I feel so bad for this city" type feeling, nor does it appear to be sinking or rotting. But like I said, it's only battling, N.O., not topping it.

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Oh, and of course Charleston leaves Atlanta way, way in the dust architecture wise. That's not too hard to to though, as sadly quite a lot of Atlanta has been blown up, not by the Civil War, but "forward-thinking" Atlantans itself. The fact I live in a 1913 gothic office building is a fluke not too reprsentative of the city.
  • Current Music
    "I Have Forgiven Jesus" - Morrissey
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Picture Post - I'On Village

A lot of people have had heard or read me saying the work Caleb does is amazing. He and his colleages in the field of neo-urbanist planning are making better towns and cities -- both old and new. His firm has worked on many "traditional
neighborhood developments," either in the form of small subdivisions or entire new neighborhoods, like Glenwood Park in Atlanta or this UNBELIEVABLE one called I'On
, just outside of Charleston.

This giant new neighborhood was designed by Duany, Plater-Zyberk, the leading neo-urbanist design firm, with help from the company where Caleb work, Tunnel-Spangler-Walsh. If you think it's impossible to build good-looking suburbs, that McMansions or generic ranches or Colonials are the only way to go, check out these pictures!!!!!

Please note that all these buildings are BRAND NEW! They only look 100 years old...

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  • Current Music
    "How Can You Possibly Know How I Feel?" - Morrissey
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Top Movies

I've seen that book meme going around but I don't really like it (list is too long and arbitrary, plus it includes plays) so I'm doing instead a list of the Top 100 Films of the 20th Century, as chosen by the American Film Institute:

Bold Films You've Seen
Italicize Films You've Seen Bits Of
List # You've Seen at Bottom

1. "Citizen Kane," 1941
2. "Casablanca," 1942
3. "The Godfather," 1972
4. "Gone With the Wind," 1939
5. "Lawrence of Arabia," 1962
6. "The Wizard of Oz," 1939
7. "The Graduate," 1967
8. "On the Waterfront," 1954
9. "Schindler's List," 1993
10. "Singin' in the Rain," 1952
11. "It's a Wonderful Life," 1946
12. "Sunset Boulevard," 1950
13. "The Bridge on the River Kwai," 1957
14. "Some Like it Hot," 1959
15. "Star Wars," 1977
16. "All About Eve," 1950
17. "The African Queen," 1951
18. "Psycho," 1960
19. "Chinatown," 1974
20. "One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest," 1975
21. "The Grapes of Wrath," 1940
22. "2001: A Space Odyssey," 1968
23. "The Maltese Falcon," 1941
24. "Raging Bull," 1980
25. "E.T. - The Extra-Terrestrial," 1982
26. "Dr. Strangelove," 1964
27. "Bonnie and Clyde," 1967
28. "Apocalypse Now," 1979
29. "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington," 1939
30. "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre," 1948
31. "Annie Hall," 1977
32. "The Godfather Part II," 1974
33. "High Noon," 1952
34. "To Kill a Mockingbird," 1962
35. "It Happened One Night," 1934
36. "Midnight Cowboy," 1969
37. "The Best Years of Our Lives," 1946
38. "Double Indemnity," 1944
39. "Doctor Zhivago," 1965
40. "North by Northwest," 1959
41. "West Side Story," 1961
42. "Rear Window," 1954
43. "King Kong," 1933
44. "The Birth of a Nation," 1915
45. "A Streetcar Named Desire," 1951
46. "A Clockwork Orange," 1971
47. "Taxi Driver," 1976
48. "Jaws," 1975
49. "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," 1937
50. "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid," 1969
51. "The Philadelphia Story," 1940
52. "From Here to Eternity," 1953
53. "Amadeus," 1984
54. "All Quiet on the Western Front," 1930
55. "The Sound of Music," 1965
56. "M*A*S*H," 1970
57. "The Third Man," 1949
58. "Fantasia," 1940
59. "Rebel Without a Cause," 1955
60. "Raiders of the Lost Ark," 1981
61. "Vertigo," 1958
62. "Tootsie," 1982
63. "Stagecoach," 1939
64. "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," 1977
65. "The Silence of the Lambs," 1991
66. "Network," 1976
67. "The Manchurian Candidate," 1962
68. "An American in Paris," 1951
69. "Shane," 1953
70. "The French Connection," 1971
71. "Forrest Gump," 1994
72. "Ben-Hur," 1959
73. "Wuthering Heights," 1939
74. "The Gold Rush," 1925
75. "Dances With Wolves," 1990
76. "City Lights," 1931
77. "American Graffiti," 1973
78. "Rocky," 1976
79. "The Deer Hunter," 1978
80. "The Wild Bunch," 1969
81. "Modern Times," 1936
82. "Giant," 1956
83. "Platoon," 1986
84. "Fargo," 1996
85. "Duck Soup," 1933
86. "Mutiny on the Bounty," 1935
87. "Frankenstein," 1931
88. "Easy Rider," 1969
89. "Patton," 1970
90. "The Jazz Singer," 1927
91. "My Fair Lady," 1964
92. "A Place in the Sun," 1951
93. "The Apartment," 1960
94. "Goodfellas," 1990
95. "Pulp Fiction," 1994
96. "The Searchers," 1956
97. "Bringing Up Baby," 1938
98. "Unforgiven," 1992
99. "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner," 1967
100. "Yankee Doodle Dandy," 1942

# Seen: 58
# Seen Bits of: 7

Some my favorite movies appearing on this list: Lawrence of Arabia, Wizard of Oz, Sunset Boulevard, Dr. Strangelove, Annie Hall, Rear Window, Jaws, Amadeus, The Third Man, Raiders, Close Encounters, Modern Times.

Some of my favorite movies not on this list: Well, too many to list, but surprised Vertigo didn't make it.

Also, what the heck is Forest Gump doing on that list?
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    content content

Ah, Morrissey

Got the latest Morrissey, You Are The Quarry. Predictably am enjoying it.

Here's one of my favorite tracks; gotta love the chorus

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Other fav tracks are "How Can Anybody Possibly Know How I Feel?" (could there be a more Moz title?) and "The World Is Full of Crashing Bores."

The thing I love about Morrissey is that I feel he voices a lot of the insecurities and self-destructive feelings I get and that a lot of us get. Maybe his lyrics show an extreme of this, but so be it. Probably this is why listening to him (or the Smiths) makes me happy; it makes me think, "Damn, I'm not that bad, am I? I'm not that maudlin or whiney or self-deprecating or hopeless... am I?"

Yesterday Daniel was saying in the car how this pose of Morrissey's has grown old and he should be over all this teenage angst, but I for one am happy he's still the groove, more or less. Seems to me it's quite possible Morrissey is in fact "posing" and doesn't mean all the things he puts in his songs, so I wouldn't ascribe the feelings of his songs directly to him. What he's doing, in my opinion, is evoking those bitter unhappy moments, which to me at least is a cleansing, helpful thing. Because I'm a bitter 29-year-old? Not as bitter as the protagonists of M's lyrics but something like that, sometimes.
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    content content
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So today Caleb and I celebrated Memorial Day by biking all around Atlanta, including going on Memorial Drive. We must've gone around 8 miles I guess -- through Downtown, Summerhill, Grant Park, Reynoldstown, Candler Park, Inman Park, and Old Fourth Ward.

However, that's not the point of this post... my point was to point to a post Caleb just made about a psychic experience he had. I admit, the man is touched.

This also reminds me...

Saturday night while walking around an old, old part of Charleston, Caleb was grabbed by something -- something neither of us could see! Caleb was walking just ahead of me on the sidewalk and suddenly he jerked back with this horrible experession on his face. My immediate though was that he'd been stung by an insect or walked into a spiderweb, which is one of his allergies, but that wasn't it. He said something had grabbed his arm and pulled him back a few feet! We guess it was a ghost.

On Friday night Caleb sensed a ghost in front of, as I recall, a grey house in Ansonborough.

He is amazing with sensing ghosts. There's on in our friend Eleanor's house (even I could tell) and one followed us in the Garden District in N.O. (right near Anne Rice's former home).

P.S. This is a new icon, yay!
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    impressed impressed
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Hot hot hot

So I bought some supermarket sushi for dinner and once again, I get the feeling I just don't have any tastebuds, because I've got a tube of wasabe and I swear I need to put around 3 dollops on each before I even taste it.

It's weird how different spices affect different people. For example, Caleb eats some Mexican type foods that are way too hot for me, even the mildest versions, because they contain chiles. But then I can make some simple soup and Caleb won't be able to eat it because it has too much black pepper -- and I can't believe black pepper could bother anyway, it's not really "hot" at all to me. Daniel meanwhile can't stand anything hot so I guess Indian food is out for him.
  • Current Mood
    okay okay
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Most puzzling

Online groups are so weird. I'm in a fan group on Yahoo and I swear, I've seen post after post of mine get totally ignored, even when the topic is totally ABOUT the particular fan thing or is something that is begging a response. Yet over the weekend somebody posed an analysis of something and it seems to be generating 20 posts an hour... on and on and on. It's a good discussion and I've gotten into it a bit, but I really wonder sometimes about the group dynamics. Like... how does it happen that sometimes everybody and their mom jumps into a discussion and then a similar type post will inspire not one peep?

This is the same group that seemed determined not to give me a straight answer on when their chat time is -- all I wanted to know is what is the time for East Coast people and I get these round-about answers like "Here's a link to a world time chart."

These seem like nice fans but I think they are sometimes really oblivious about being inclusive of outsiders... although I post enough it's not like I'm some lurker they've never heard of.
  • Current Music
    "Come Back to Camden" - Morrissey
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Pigs eating pig

Study after study seems to show that the Southeast is home a proportionally higherly number obese people than anywhere else in the country. The Southeast is also way up there for rates of heart disease, diabetes and other weight-related illnesses. What's kind of yucky about it all is that at least for CDC reports, all this news comes out of Atlanta, CDC headquarters. I swear, the reason the CDC has got so big on this whole obesity thing and walking for health is just seeing people here in Atlanta! Today I was cross the street with two very large women who were chatting and eating PORK RINDS!

(For a piece of related artwork, click here.)
  • Current Mood
    awake awake